There are five key stages the 737 MAX needs to go through with the FAA to receive clearance to resume flying.  

  • The first of those, the eCAB simulator certification session has already been completed, and ensures that the entire software system is operating as intended, both normally and in the event of a system failure.
  • The second stage will be a multi-day simulator session with airline pilots to assess human factors and crew workload under various scenarios.
  • The third stage will be FAA certification flights with the final version of the software. 
  • The fourth stage will be Boeing’s final submission of the complete upgrade package
  • The fifth stage will be  the FAA’s Flight Standardization Board releasing a report on the training requirements for a public comment period, then final approval.
  • Another multi-day simulator session between stages 4 and 5 will entail pilots representing international regulators for them to also validate training requirements.

But the sixth step may be the most important of all, convincing pilots, flight attendants and the public that the airplane is now safe to fly.

This week, Southwest pilots, American flight attendants, and a university professor all expressed concern about flying on the MAX, which makes Boeing’s job all the more difficult for the final task, convincing the public that the MAX is safe.


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