More headaches for Boeing
An FAA-ordered grounding, metallic dendrites and storage shortage cause continued problems for the Dreamliner manufacturer.
According to a source, "The gaps between cells will be bigger. I think that's why there was overheating," The lithium-ion batteries used extensively by the Dreamliner have already been identified as the problem, but Boeing (along with numerous agencies around the world) has failed to pinpoint the exact cause.
Two weeks ago, metallic dendrites, small fibers that form after repeating charging and discharging, were at the top of investigators' lists. These dendrites can cause the short circuiting that leads to a fire.
Reuters asked Kiyoshi Kanamura, professor at Tokyo Metropolitan University, about the battery issue. Kanamura stated that the logical fix is to install ceramic plates between each cell in the battery and add a vent to the battery box.
Reports emerged in India Wednesday that said Boeing believed the Dreamliner will commence flight again in early April 2013. A Boeing spokesman would only say, "Good progress is being made."
But early April doesn't solve the new problem that's quickly becoming another Dreamliner headache. The New York Times reported that since Boeing has refused to stop production, the company is running out of space to store the newly produced Dreamliner 787s.
The company is producing a little more than one aircraft per week but with the Federal Aviation Administration grounding, Boeing needs permission to fly the aircraft -- something the agency isn't likely to grant strictly to avert a traffic jam.
According to a Boeing spokesman, "We have adequate space today in Everett to accommodate our production airplanes," but other reports show that it’s likely more complicated than what Boeing is saying.
Boeing reportedly asked two of the largest commercial aircraft storage facilities in the nation for space to store some of its other airplane models in order to make room for the Dreamliner. The airfield next to Boeing's Everett, Wash., production facility is filled with new 787s that have caused one general aviation runway to close, according to Matt Cawby, blogger and aviation reporter who observed the Boeing factory.
And if all of the Dreamliner woes weren't enough, Boeing faces labor disputes. On Tuesday, engineers (who have the job of investigating the Dreamliner problems) narrowly voted to ratify a contract that averted a possible strike.
Technical workers, which Bloomberg says are the liaisons between engineers and machinists, voted down the contract and authorized a strike at any time.
Despite the constant barrage of bad headlines and pictures of melted and charred batteries, Boeing's stock is only down 3% this year.
More from Benzinga
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market finished an upbeat week on a mixed note. The S&P 500 added just over a point, holding its weekly gain at 1.0% while the Nasdaq lost 0.4%.
The major averages began the day on an upbeat note, but relinquished their opening gains during the first 90 minutes of action. The early sentiment was boosted by a better-than-expected nonfarm payrolls report for February (175K versus Briefing.com consensus 163K), but a closer look into the report suggested that ... More
More Market News
|There’s a problem getting this information right now. Please try again later.|
MUST-SEE ON MSN
- Video: Easy DIY smoked meats at home
A charcuterie master shares his process for cold-smoking meat at home.
- Jetpacks about to go mainstream
- Weird things covered by home insurance
- Bing: 70 percent of adults report 'digital eye strain'