MIAMI – The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a new order addressing Boeing 787 localizer capture issues in an airworthiness directive (AD) on December 3.

The AD, to take effect on December 18, follows multiple incidents on approaches into Hong Kong (HKG) where flight crews experienced localizer issues and a previous airworthiness bulletin was issued on September 24.

New FAA procedures involve calling for the crew on such approaches to “monitor localizer raw data and call out any significant deviations” while adding the necessity of performing “an immediate go-around if the airplane has not intercepted the final approach course as shown by the localizer deviation.”

Boeing 787-9 Everett Factory Photo: Boeing

A Localizer Overshoot


The AD also addresses issues when the autopilot flight director systems (AFDS) failed “to transition to the instrument landing system localizer beam” following “the consistent-localizer-capture function in the flight-control modules [initiating] a transition to capture [the localizer] during approach.

Further stating that such failures could cause a “localizer overshoot” and a potential “controlled flight into terrain”, the AD highlights the importance of the new procedures.

Boeing stated that it has “been working closely with the FAA and other regulators on [the] issue, and we are fully in agreement” with the AD while adding that it is “developing and implementing a permanent solution in an expedient manner.”

While the localizer issues in HKG have not led to any accidents, the AD will ensure the continued safety of the Boeing 787 family.


Featured image: Maiden flight of the 787-8 Dreamliner. Photo: Dave Sizer.