WSJ: Boeing readying battery tweaks for 787 Dreamliners

The Wall Street Journal has gotten word that Boeing is preparing tweaks to its 787's lithium-ion batteries that could minimize the risk of fire and let its Dreamliners take to the skies before a long-term solution is sussed out. Citing industry and government officials, the WSJ says the modifications will see a larger separation between battery cells in an effort to lessen the risk of heat and fire spreading. Other measures may include keeping cells more firmly in place to prevent them from moving about and interfering with electronics, incorporating heat sensors and a beefed-up battery cover that could contain flames and chemicals. Changes to the aircraft aren't nailed down across the board just yet, and they still need approval by Japanese and American regulators before they can be applied. According to one of the WSJ's sources, a best-case scenario could see Dreamliners put back on passenger flight duty in March.

[Image credit: Martin Deutsch, Flickr]