Boeing planes, awaiting approval from US and international regulators before they can return to service, acknowledged it had to correct flaws in its 737 MAX flight simulator software used to train pilots, after two deadly crashes involving the aircraft that killed 346 people.
“Boeing has made corrections to the 737 MAX simulator software and has provided additional information to device operators to ensure that the simulator experience is representative across different flight conditions,” it said in a statement. The company did not indicate when it first became aware of the problem, and whether it informed regulators.
Its statement marked the first time Boeing acknowledged there was a design flaw in software linked to the 737 MAX, whose MCAS anti-stall software has been blamed in large part for the Ethiopian Airlines tragedy. The company said the latest “changes will improve the simulation of force loads on the manual trim wheel,” a rarely used manual wheel to control the plane’s angle. “Boeing is working closely with the device manufacturers and regulators on these changes and improvements, and to ensure that customer training is not disrupted,” it added.
“As a result of the continuing investigation into both aircraft accidents, we are looking at the potential for additional training opportunities in coordination with the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and Allied Pilots Association,” it added.