Boeing to present Dreamliner fix to FAA

By WEEK Producer

February 22, 2013 Updated Feb 22, 2013 at 1:25 PM CDT

Boeing said it has a temporary fix for its battery problems that have grounded its new flagship Dreamliner and will present the plan to the Federal Aviation Administration later today.

The FAA ordered the worldwide grounding of all 50 of Boeing's 787 Dreamliners on January 16, after there were problems with the plane's batteries on two separate flights.

A lithium ion battery caught fire on a plane in Boston and a smoking battery led to an emergency landing of another plane in Japan.

Analysts estimate Boeing is losing about $200 million a month in delivery payments while spending as much as $1 billion a month to keep the 787's production line running.

The grounding is also costing airlines, like United, which has had to cancel new routes while federal safety regulators inspect the planes.

Publicly the company said it is still investigating the problem and is being tight lipped on the specifics.

However, industry insiders expect Boeing's fix will include putting the batteries inside of a fire resistant container that will prevent overheating by having more space between the batteries and improved ventilation.

If the plan is approved, Boeing hopes to have the Dreamliner back in the air by April.

The problem has been isolated to one of four possible issues and engineers are hoping the temporary fix will lead to a permanent solution.

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