Boeing Has Completed the Software Update for 737 MAX Planes
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Boeing has completed the development of a software update for its imperiled 737 MAX jets, the plane manufacturer said in a release Thursday afternoon.
Updating the 737 MAX’s software is a key step to the controversial plane returning to the skies following two deadly crashes.
The software in question controls the MAX’s Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), which automatically pushes down the aircraft nose if it senses it is tipping too high, risking an aerodynamic stall. Officials have looked at the system and the software behind it possibly playing a role in two similar and MAX crashes, one on Lion Air and one on Ethiopian Airlines.
MCAS became the center of controversy after the first MAX crash on Lion Air flight 610 because pilots accused Boeing of withholding information about the system, saying they weren’t told about it, nor was it included in the flight operations manual for the MAX.
Boeing maintains that its 737 MAX planes will be safe to fly with the software update to the MCAS function. The Chicago-based company said Thursday that the new software has been tested on 207 engineering trial flights totaling more than 360 hours.
Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said the company is preparing for the final certification flight with the Federal Aviation Administration, one of the key next steps to rolling out the software update worldwide. The company must also provide additional information to the FAA on how pilots interact with the airplane controls and displays in different flight scenarios.
“We’re committed to providing the FAA and global regulators all the information they need, and to getting it right,” Muilenburg said in the release. “We’re making clear and steady progress and are confident that the 737 MAX with updated MCAS software will be one of the safest airplanes ever to fly. The accidents have only intensified our commitment to our values, including safety, quality and integrity, because we know lives depend on what we do.”
All MAX planes have been grounded worldwide after the second fatal crash on Ethiopian Airlines in early March.
US carriers that fly the MAX, including Southwest Airlines and American Airlines, have taken their MAX fleets off flight schedules through August. It remains unclear when the jets might be cleared to fly again.
Featured photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees