Boeing Dreamliner Li-ion batteries keep on smoking

Boeing 787 Dreamliner

“The safety pressure relief valve connecting to one battery cell out of eight was found to have opened, it was found that liquid had dispersed in the main battery enclosure.”

Back in February last year, we reported on an in-depth look at the aircraft’s battery trouble, and a bit earlier The Guardian has a useful info-graphic highlighting the full range of issues facing Boeing (not all batter-related). Boeing’s response – Boeing considers Dreamliner Li-ion battery design changes – seemed to be to contain and minimise the inherent battery problems. We wrote:

The main issues appear to be improving the separation between cells within the Li-ion batteries, as a way of minimizing the threat of heat or fire spreading. Enhanced heat-sensors may be one approach, and keeping the “cells more rigid” another, to help prevent any electronics interference…

This is confirmed by the BBC’s transport correspondent, Richard Westcott.

“Boeing never did solve the battery problem that grounded the entire Dreamliner fleet last year. Instead, Boeing put in a raft of safety measures to contain any future issues.”

And tt seems this is what has happened on this latest occasion…



  1. Are these planes using LiFePO4 batteries? It has proved a stable chemistry in applications like eBikes and cars.

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