Boeing updates 737 Max software to improve safety

Boeing finishes software update for grounded airliner

Boeing finishes software update for grounded airliner

Boeing now awaits approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which must fly a certification flight and also review all the manufacturer's documentation on the changes made to the flight-control system before the MAX can be recertified and cleared to reenter commercial service.

Southwest and American have scheduled MAX flights as of August 6 and August 20 respectively.

In both accidents, the automated Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), pushed the planes' noses down while the pilots struggled to regain control. Between the two crashes, 346 people died.

Boeing has delivered about 370 Max jets around the world, but they have been grounded since mid-March. That is causing airlines to cancel flights heading into the busy summer travel season.

Boeing has disclosed an initial financial hit of $US1 billion to fix the plane, and new jets are parked at its Seattle-area factory and elsewhere because deliveries have stopped.

A Technical Advisory Board organized by the FAA will participate in the review.

He said in a statement that Boeing has completed development of the updated software for the 737 MAX, along with associated simulator testing and the company's engineering test flight.

"Boeing did not treat the 737 Max 8 situation like the emergency it was", said Daniel Carey, president of the American Airlines pilots' union, which has filed public records related to the matter.

Boeing developed the Max early this decade to compete with a jet from its European rival Airbus that was winning over airline customers with its better fuel efficiency. The company registered 2,140 flight cancelations during the quarter-1,200 were due to Boeing's troubled 737 MAX planes.

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Following two fatal crashes, the Boeing 737 Max was grounded and has remained so for approximately two months.

Elwell partially blamed Boeing for its lack of clarity on the MCAS system: "When I first heard about it, I thought that the MCAS should have been more adequately explained in the flight manual".

Safety advocates and relatives of passengers killed in the crashes are concerned that the plane could carry passengers again even before investigations into the crashes are completed.

Milleron, whose family is suing Boeing and Ethiopian Airlines, said travelers hold the final power to ground the plane. "That's the reason that we had this crash".

An FAA spokesman said Thursday the agency will "clear the aircraft for return to flight only after we're satisfied that the safety concerns have been addressed".

It will also make the system less potent, which is expected to prevent the steep dives seen in the two crashes, and provide additional training materials, it said.

Last week, Seifman met with Boeing management with a focus, obviously, on the 737 Max.

The airlines, which must still decide on pilot training, have said they would use the jets as spare planes if they are approved for flight before those dates.

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