Boeing is engaged on new software program for the 737 Max that may use a second flight management pc to make the system extra dependable, fixing an issue that surfaced in June with the grounded jet, two individuals briefed on the matter mentioned Friday.
When completed, the brand new software program will give Boeing an entire package deal for regulators to guage as the corporate tries to get the Max flying once more, in response to the individuals, who did not need to be recognized as a result of the brand new software program hasn’t been publicly disclosed.
The Max was grounded worldwide after crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia that killed a complete of 346 individuals.
Use of the second redundant pc, reported Thursday by the Seattle Instances, would resolve an issue found in theoretical drawback simulations accomplished by the Federal Aviation Administration after the crashes. The simulations discovered a problem that would outcome within the airplane’s nostril pitching down. Pilots in testing both took too lengthy to recuperate from the issue or couldn’t achieve this, one of many individuals mentioned.
Within the new configuration, each of the airplane’s flight management computer systems can be monitored by software program as an alternative of the present one, and pilots would get a warning if the computer systems disagreed on altitude, air pace, and the angle of the wings relative to the air movement, the particular person mentioned. Just one pc was used previously, as a result of Boeing was in a position to show statistically that its system was dependable, the particular person mentioned.
The issue revealed in June is just like the one implicated within the two crashes. That drawback was with flight-control software program known as MCAS, which pushed the nostril down based mostly on defective readings from one sensor. MCAS was put in on the planes as a measure to forestall aerodynamic stalling, and initially it wasn’t disclosed to pilots.
The brand new software program would make your entire flight-control system, together with MCAS, depend on two computer systems quite than one, mentioned the particular person. “It will make the entire flight management system extra strong,” the particular person mentioned.
Boeing Co. spokesman Charles Bickers mentioned solely that the corporate is working with the FAA and different regulators on software program to repair the issue that surfaced in June. The corporate has mentioned it expects to current the adjustments to the FAA and different regulators in September, and it hopes the Max can return to flight as early as October.
The 2 individuals briefed on the matter mentioned Boeing has completed updating the MCAS software program by scaling again its energy to push the nostril down. It’s also linking the software program’s nose-down command to 2 sensors on every airplane as an alternative of counting on only one within the unique design.
The FAA has been extensively criticized for its course of that licensed the Max as secure to fly, largely as a result of it makes use of firm staff to do inspections which are then reviewed by the company.
Krisher reported from Detroit. He will be reached at http://twitter.com/tkrisher