A Japan Airlines Boeing 787 that left Boston for Tokyo on Thursday returned to Boston "due to aircraft maintenance", the company said on its website without elaborating.

Japan Airlines has one of the largest fleets of the Boeing 787 and has had several problems with the new-generation Dreamliner plane since it was allowed to resume flying after being grounded between January and April for serious battery problems.

The plane left from Boston at 12:57pm (1657 GMT) but returned to its airport of departure at around 6:00 pm.

"As a standard precautionary measure due to a maintenance message (fuel pump) indicator, JL007 bound for Tokyo-Narita decided to return to Boston Logan for check and landed safely," Carol Anderson, a US-based JAL spokeswoman, told AFP in an email.

Boston Logan said on its Twitter site the 787 made "a precautionary return".

"Flight has landed and is taxiing to gate," it said.

JAL officials in Tokyo were not immediately available for comment.

Last week, another 787 used by Ethiopian Airlines caught fire at London's Heathrow airport.

Japanese airlines Japan Airlines and ANA, which has the biggest fleet of the craft, have experienced around a dozen minor complaints with the 787 since it was allowed to resume flying after four months of being grounded.

After months of investigations, US authorities in April formally approved Boeing's battery fix and Japanese regulators followed suit.

The battery supplier, Japan's GS Yuasa, has voiced confidence that the system will never cause similar problems again.