The Dreamliner Grounded And Boeing’s Future

Boeing Dreamliners are grounded all over the world. The American super plane in trouble. We’re looking at Boeing’s misstep.

All Nippon Airways' Boeing 787 "the Dreamliner" parks on the tarmac at Haneda airport in Tokyo, Friday, Jan. 18, 2013. (AP)

All Nippon Airways’ Boeing 787 “the Dreamliner” parks on the tarmac at Haneda airport in Tokyo, Friday, Jan. 18, 2013. (AP)

When it comes to American manufacturing, there’s no bigger or prouder name than Boeing.  America’s number one exporter in a time when the country needs exports.

So it matters when Boeing’s big, new, much-ballyhooed, next-generation airliner – its marquee product – takes a hit.  And right now, every Boeing Dreamliner in the world is grounded.

Fires onboard.  Emergency landing.  Issues with a battery.  And down it’s come.  With this product and this company, the story of why matters.

This hour, On Point:  the Boeing 787, the Dreamliner, on the ground.

-Tom Ashbrook


Matthew Wald, reporter for the New York Times. He’s been covering Boeing and the Dreamliner. You can read his latest article here. (@mattwaldNYT)

Richard Aboulafia, vice president of analysis for the Teal Group Corporation, which conducts research and provides information on the aerospace and defense industries.

Dominic Gates, aerospace reporter for the Seattle Times. You can read his latest article here. (@seatimesaero)

From Tom’s Reading List

The New York Times “Investigators in the United States and Japan indicated on Tuesday that many questions remained unanswered in their search for the cause of two incidents in which lithium-ion batteries burned on Boeing 787 aircraft.”

The Seattle Times “In 2006, a devastating lab fire in Arizona showed just how volatile Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner lithium-ion battery can be if its energy is not adequately contained. A single battery connected to prototype equipment exploded, and despite a massive fire-department response the whole building burned down.”

NBC News “Boeing’s new-model 787 is receiving plenty of attention lately – but it’s not at all the kind of buzz the aircraft maker had been hoping for with an aircraft that carries such high hopes it was dubbed the ‘Dreamliner.’ ‘Welcome to the age of social media, Boeing,’ quipped Michel Merluzeau, managing partner with G2 Solutions and a longtime aviation analyst.”

Photo Gallery


Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Nov 25, 2015
President Barack Obama, accompanied by Pulitzer Prize winning Iowa writer Marilynne Robinson, arrives to the State Library of Iowa in the Ola Babcock Miller Building, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in Des Moines. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

On the day before Thanksgiving, we talk with Marilynne Robinson – one of America’s greatest authors, thinkers, moralists — about fear and hope in a hard, frightening time.

Nov 25, 2015
Three of baker Renee McLeoud's delicious pies, on display in the WBUR studios. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Bring your appetite! We’re gathering around the radio table with three chefs and new Thanksgiving recipes.

Nov 24, 2015
An archival image of a McKinley - Hobart Presidential Campaign Poster from 1896. (Public Domain / WikiCommons)

Republican political strategist Karl Rove is thinking about the McKinley 1896 campaign and the GOP field right now. Karl Rove is with us.

Nov 24, 2015
This photo made from the footage taken from Russian Defense Ministry official web site Monday, Nov. 23, 2015 shows fuel tanks  hit during the attack of Russian warplanes in Syria. Russian warplanes on Monday attacked oil extraction, transport and refinement facilities in areas controlled by Islamic State militants. (AP Photo/Russian Defense Ministry Press Service)

ISIS, Inc. The terrorist organization is raking in billions –from oil, grain, antiquities, and taxes. We look at how to break the ISIS bank. Plus, Turkey downs a Russian plane. We’ll have the latest.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Fresh Ideas For Your Thanksgiving: Recipes
Wednesday, Nov 25, 2015

Did our Thanksgiving 2016 episode make you hungry? Good news — we’ve got recipes right here.

More »
1 Comment
Karl Rove Still Won’t Get Involved In The 2016 G.O.P. Primary
Tuesday, Nov 24, 2015

Karl Rove may say he’s not endorsing or getting involved in the 2016 G.O.P. presidential primary, but that won’t stop from offering advice on how to beat Republican front runner Donald Trump.

More »
Roger Cohen And Barry Posen On ISIS
Monday, Nov 23, 2015

A brief, but illustrative exchange between Barry Posen and Roger Cohen during our conversation on ISIS today.

More »