NYT: New Problem for Boeing 787 Battery Maker

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by NYCUA1K, Mar 28, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    TOKYO — Two lithium-ion car batteries produced by GS Yuasa, the same Japanese company that supplies batteries for the grounded Boeing 787 jetliner fleet, have overheated in recent days.

    Mitsubishi Motors said Wednesday that a lithium-ion battery for its i-MiEV electric car caught fire at an assembly plant on March 18. Three days later, a battery in a plug-in hybrid Outlander car overheated and showed signs of melting.

    No one was injured in either incident, Mitsubishi Motors said. It did not issue any recalls but said it would halt production and sales of the two models while it investigated the battery troubles. It also advised owners of the Outlander plug-in hybrid to drive only on gasoline mode for the time being.
    “First we need to clarify the cause,” Ryugo Nakao, the head of product and strategy development at Mitsubishi Motors, said at a news conference in Tokyo.

    Mr. Nakao stressed that the plane and auto batteries were “structurally different.”
    And Marc Birtel, a Boeing spokesman, said in a statement that the aircraft maker had been assured “that the battery in question is fundamentally different from the 787 battery both in its construction processes, design, and chemistry.” READ MORE...
     
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  2. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    This pretty much seems to isolate the source of the problem to the batteries rather than to a flawed electrical wiring design in the plane, as some here have suggested.
     
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  3. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    I do not see the leap of logic for that one, apart from showing GS Yuasa may have a propensity to push technologies too far. It does clearly implicate GS Yuasa, but it does not exonerate any other electrical components. There was no question about GS Yuasa when otehr exterts in teh field suggested that a 60% pass rate was the norm and GS Yuasa was passing 90%. Unless GS Yuasa technology was far better than anyone else that would be a red flag, no question about it. However, there is nothing yet indicated that suggests any other components are cleared.

    Frankly, this suggests greater potential problems because the systems integrators did not adequately test the supplied components, nor did they have adequate quality control.
    Is it plausible that this failure is unique, that only GS Yuasa batteries are at fault? What is next?
     
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  4. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    This has been discussed beginning at about here in another thread. The "leap of logic" stems from trying to solve two equations with one unknown: The B787 batteries and the batteries for Mitsubishi's hybrid car, both of the Li-ion kind manufactured by the same company, having to the same "spontaneous combustion" problem, whose cause remains a mystery, an unknown. The development with the Mitsubishi hybrid car batteries seems to have GS Yuasa and other engineers beginning to make the same type of "leap of logic." I know where I would be putting most of the resources to try to find the root cause of this battery problem...
     
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  5. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Lots of discussion, absolutely. My only disagreement, if indeed we have one, is that the story does not end with a battery fix. That may get the aircraft back in the air, but there will certainly be a stream of SDR's and AD's about other electrical issues that have also been missed. We hope nothing more serious than that, even though this grounding. lest anybody forget it, was unprecedented because it was done via an emergency AD rather than a suspension of the type certificate. That's a leading indicator that the FAA is doing all it can to avoid expansion of the issue. If so, those AD's might begin to arrive soon and probably in volume.
     
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