Boeing Test Flies 787

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Boeing launched a 787 from Paine Field in Everett, Wash., on Monday afternoon and flew a two-hour test flight with its redesigned battery system. The 787 returned and landed with no apparent problems, The Associated Press reported. Boeing had said in a statement prior to the flight that during the check flight, the crew would cycle the landing gear, operate all the backup systems, and perform electrical system checks. "Following the completion of the functional check flight, we will analyze the data from the flight and prepare for certification ground and flight demonstration in the coming days," Boeing said. Also on Monday, the NTSB announced details of its upcoming forum on lithium batteries, scheduled for April 11-12.

The NTSB said the forum will focus on three areas: the design, development and performance of lithium ion batteries; regulations and standards related to manufacturing, use and transport of the batteries; and the application and safety aspects of lithium battery technology in various transportation modes. A preliminary agenda has been posted online. The safety board said the forum will be streamed live online and later will be archived on the NTSB website. The 787 fleet has been grounded since January after two airplanes experienced battery malfunctions.