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Lightning protection is one area where we’ve had a lot of discussion to make sure that [composite structures] are comfortable” with FAA regulations, says Cogan.
Unlike aluminum alloy airframes, the composite skin is dielectric. Boeing and Mitsubishi’s concern was that gaps between fasteners and composites might cause arcing, Cogan said. The redesign produced fasteners with tighter seals.
Boeing regards the 787’s lightning protection system as proprietary. What is known is that strikes are dissipated with a phosphor bronze wire mesh interwoven into the composite fabric.
Originally posted by kilcoo316
[And I am still concerned about maintainability, inspite of being shown various NDT approaches to inspecting the 787 elsewhere]
If you make them from bigger parts, there is more to go wrong and that can cause greater wastage.