Boeing testing software changes to 737 MAX planes

Boeing testing software changes to 737 MAX planes

Boeing testing software changes to 737 MAX planes

Garuda Indonesia was invited to the briefing, chief executive Ari Askhara told Reuters on Monday.

Boeing announced on March 12 ― just after the Ethiopian Airlines crash ― that it would carry out a new "software enhancement" created to "make a safe aircraft even safer", and would also set up new crew training related to the MCAS system.

About 200 pilots, technical leaders and regulators are due to attend another session on Wednesday.

An anti-stall system that investigators believe led to the fatal crash of a Boeing 737 MAX 8 in October had been activated on the Ethiopian Airlines plane that plummeted under similar circumstances this month, the carrier's CEO said Monday.

"At the same time, we continue to work closely with our customers and regulators on software and training updates for the 737 MAX", Boeing said.

A Boeing spokeswoman said the Wednesday event was one of a series of in-person information sessions.

Flaws in a new flight control system, called MCAS (Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System), that Boeing introduced on the MAX are suspected as having played a major role in two crashes in less than five months.

Boeing spokesman Gordon Johndroe said the MAX software fix will be offered to airlines "free of charge" and will be released only after it is certified by the FAA.

Ethiopian Airlines's chief executive Tewolde GebreMariam
Boeing testing software changes to 737 MAX planes

"Less than a month ago, we took delivery of yet new two 737 cargo planes (three different versions from the one that crashed)". Aviation regulators responded by grounding the model around the world.

Singapore Airlines said its offshoot, SilkAir, which operates the 737 MAX, had received an invitation to the meeting and would send representatives. South Korean low-priced carrier Eastar Jet will send two pilots, a spokesman said. Questions lingered, however, whether the required training was sufficient and whether airlines like Ethiopian had access to simulators to give pilots thorough experience handling the software.

It has ordered 20 MAX jets and committed to buying a further 40.

Teams from the three USA airlines that own 737 MAX jets participated in a session in Renton reviewing a planned software upgrade on Saturday.

A USA official briefed on the matter on Saturday said the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had not yet signed off on the software upgrade and training but aimed to review and approve them by April.

Flight ET 302 crashed on March 10 just minutes into its flight to Nairobi.

Tewolde's comments to The Wall Street Journal came the same day as the CEO issued a statement saying the carrier "believes in" Boeing despite the crash.

GebreMariam's reported remarks are the first from a senior official close to the flight to confirm that MCAS was operating, although he said that only the investigation would provide conclusive evidence. It also included some self-guided instruction, the official added.

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