New Delhi: In the wake of two deadly accidents in recent months, Boeing said that a software upgrade to MCAS stall prevention system for the grounded 737 MAX aircraft will be rolled out in the coming weeks, sources said. The system was implicated when the 737 MAX 8 crashed in Indonesia in October. But the sources warned that the reason behind last weekend’s fatal Ethiopia Airlines accident is not yet determined.
The Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) is installed to help pilots compensate for any movements caused by the realignment of the engines.
MAX aircraft grounded worldwide
Following Sunday’s mishap that killed 157 passengers and crew, MAX aircraft have been grounded around the world, with Boeing stopping deliveries of its top-selling model.
Boeing working on software fix
Sources say that even before Sunday’s accident, Boeing had been working on its software fix, which will take around two hours to install. The black boxes recovered from the Ethiopian aircraft, which crashed moments after takeoff, are being analyzed by French authorities to determine the reason behind the crash.
In October, the Lion Air 737 MAX 8 had also crashed minutes after taking off, killing 189 people on board. After the initial investigation, it was understood that a malfunction on the stall prevention system caused the crash.
Both the sources said that Boeing is planning to start installing the patch in around 10 days.
Neither source was able to specify the cost of the upgrade.
According to estimates by one analyst, the cost of the upgrade for each aircraft would be close to US$ 2 million and less than US$ 1 billion for the 371 planes presently in use.