"The Indonesian National Transportation Safety Committee has indicated that Lion Air flight 610 experienced erroneous input from one of its AOA (angle of attack) sensors", Boeing said in a statement on its website on Wednesday.
Indonesian accident investigators said on Monday that an airspeed indicator on the crashed jet was damaged for its last four flights, but USA authorities responded cautiously to suggestions of fleet-wide checks.
More than a week ago, a Lion Air plane crashed into the sea 15 minutes after taking off from Jakarta.
After safety officials from Basarnas, Indonesia's national search and rescue agency, retrieved the aircraft's flight data recorder (FDR), a review of the data by Boeing and Indonesian safety investigators pointed to the plausible cause of the crash. Aviation systems must account for possibility of misinterpretations of situations and foggy memories of procedures outlined in the manuals that come with these huge, complicated, and incredibly sensitive vehicles.
What is puzzling analysts is the 737 was flying in clear skies in daylight, so the pilots should have been easily able to deal with the issues with airspeed and erroneous sensors.
The accident also led to flight delays involving airlines such as Batik Air, local media reported. Capt Mohan Ranganathan, air safety expert, said, "If all AOA sensors are erroneous, it puts a big question mark on the air-worthiness of the aircraft".
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It seems patently obvious to say that such situations shouldn't happen in this day and age-and clearly the investigation is still in its earliest stage-but it is troubling to see something so deadly transpire in the most modern aircraft in the Boeing fleet.
Now Boeing is warning pilots and airlines, including Air Canada and WestJet, that they could experience similar issues with their Boeing 737 Max planes, the same model as the Lion Air plane that crashed.
In a statement cited by the Daily Mail, Lion Air stresses that the pilot responsible for the crash wasn't one of their own.
He said the pilot had landed the plane safely on that occasion. In addition, a system known as elevator trim can be changed to prompt nose-up or nose-down movement.
Boeing has warned about improper readings from the plane's monitoring system - which have the potential to force the aircraft to take a sharp dive. That is enough to send the plane out of control and cause it to fall to the ground.
Such an issue arose in 2016 at Rostov-on-Don Airport in Russia when a FlyDubai 737-800 nosed over and slammed into the runway at a steep angle, according to an interim report by Russian investigators. All 62 people on board died.