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Boeing Dreamliner Calls Flaws in Spirit and others

According to industry sources and documentation, an Italian subcontractor at the center of the recent snafus on Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner has worked for various aerospace businesses, including Spirit AeroSystems. Boeing and authorities previously stated that some 787 aircraft parts were manufactured incorrectly over the previous three years. Manufacturing Process Specification (MPS), a Leonardo subcontractor, provided them indirectly.

According to the letter seen by Reuters, Boeing notified Spirit AeroSystems in March about potential problems with parts at MPS and advised it to utilize alternate suppliers as it continued an examination of the Italian company’s procedures. It also instructed Spirit, based in Wichita, to track down any MPS parts it had used before to 2017 and treat them as “suspicious nonconforming,” meaning they would be subject to more scrutiny. The letter was met with silence from Boeing and Spirit.

The problems, according to Boeing, do not raise any urgent safety concerns for 787 Dreamliner that are already in service. MPS, a coatings supplier based in Brindisi, Italy, did not return calls or emails seeking comment. According to a list available on the planemaker’s website, MPS is also an authorized supplier for Airbus.

Out of an abundance of caution while Boeing conducts further testing and evaluation, Boeing has also decided to consider all product processed by MPS to be suspect,” it said. When asked if it or its suppliers had lately used any parts involving MPS work, a spokeswoman for the European company had no immediate reply. As an approved seller of the Airbus, MPS is also evaluated.

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