Turkish Airlines officials learned last week that its just-delivered Boeing 787-9 passenger plane isn’t quite ready for primetime. It seems film crews shooting a short video to hype the new aircraft managed to melt at least one of the plane’s high-tech electro-chromatic windows. The camera-shy plane had to be grounded before ever entering service.
Air travelers hoping to enjoy a journey on Turkish Airlines’ newest Dreamliner will have to wait just a bit longer. It seems that plans to use the shiny new plane as the set of a new promotional video may delay a just delivered Boeing 787-9 from entering service as scheduled.
According to Passenger Experience Magazine, studio lighting was set up both inside and outside of the aircraft for the video shoot and the resulting heat caused a portion of the window’s internal workings to melt and slide out of the housing. There were some initial concerns that the plane’s carbon fiber fuselage was also damaged by the heat, but even if the damage was contained to the window, the fix might not be as quick and easy as it sounds.
While it’s unlikely the outside window was affected by the extreme heat, the Dreamliner features electro-chromatic dimmable window inserts. Although Boeing touts the fixtures as easy to replace, the delicate parts (rated for temperatures of more than 60 degrees Celsius) are just a bit more complex than previous window shade-equipped cabin fixtures of yesterday.
“The 787 replaces mechanical window shades with highly reliable electro-chromatic dimmable windows with a projected life of more than 20 years,” Boeing said in materials boasting about the new technology. “In addition to eliminating the maintenance associated with light-leaking or inoperable window shades, electro-chromatic dimmable windows give cabin crews the ability to dim or brighten an entire cabin at the press of a single button.”
In this case, it seems the electro-chromatic dimmable window fell well short of its expected 20-year lifetime. On the other hand, the blistering, focused heat of movie studio lighting is likely to have far exceeded the intended limits of the devices.
[Featured Image: Boeing]