Boeing is about six months away from solving many of the 787 "teething" issues that have prompted so many high-profile complaints from customers, a top Boeing executive says.
"I think we'll turn the corner vell ry strongly about six months from now," Marty Bentrott, vice-president of sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes, told reporters on the eve of the show in Dubai.
The 787 has been in operational service for two years, but continues to operate a lower level of reliability than of a mature fleet, such as the 777 type that entered service 18 years ago, Bentrott says.
Boeing is now working to replace glitch-prone hardware and software on the aircraft, Bentrott says. But the process takes time.
"It's all back into the supply base – getting those new parts, getting that software developed, and, you know, that stuff just takes time," Bentrott says.
The software is a culprit because of the volume of information it produces, including some data that causes pilots to worry about systems that actually more reliable than they appear.
"With that intense amount of information, it causes them to perhaps be a little bit more concerned about certain functions or certain technical glitches, which, if you just make some changes in the software, you can deal with those problems," Bentrott says.
Although the 787 is still less reliable than Boeing or its customers would like, Bentrott emphasized that the aircraft is delivering a 20% improvement in fuel efficiency compared to the 767 or Airbus A330.
"We're delivering on our performance commitments," he says. "What we need to deliver on is our reliability commitment."
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