United launches new winglet type from Aviation Partners Boeing

United Airlines and Aviation Partners Boeing launched a new winglet, the Scimitar. It looks similar to the feathered winglet Boeing designed for the 737 MAX, but closer inspection shows distinct differences.

Here is the press release.

7 Comments on “United launches new winglet type from Aviation Partners Boeing

  1. Interesting- about 10 years ago there is/was a ‘ white” paper being circulated which claimed that the use of winglets also reduced trailing vortices so much that spacing for landing sequence could be significantly reduced for some models , thus improving airport thruput and saving fuel.

    Dont know if it ever got much traction – possibly due to internal or govt bcrats or possibly later data which negated the issue.

  2. Interesting that they have to add more ballast ( to supress energisible resonance modes aka flutter ?) than actual structure.

  3. In terms of ballast, just an idea, but if they could make it lighter, would that affect certification in any way? Just thinking wildly (and most probably incorrectly!)…but in F1, cars often prefer to make the structure much lighter than the minimum weight regulations, they can then put the weight where they like to help performance.

    • I don’t think I fully understand your question;
      No, if they make the structure lighter, they would likely have to add extra ballast to keep the weight at the same level – the total mass of the system is required to dampen some flutter modes.
      Yes, if they have more design space and can place the mass at a more advantageous location, they can lower the total mass of the system.

      Do note aircraft go quite a lot faster than F1 cars, and weight/balance is completely different. In F1, you place the required weight as low and central as possible to improve performance – in aviation, there is no required weight. Less is always more.
      The added mass is not because the a/c would get too light – it is required to dampen flutter modes. flutter can tear apart structure at aircraft speeds. (probably also at F1 speeds, but they don’t have to lift their mass off the ground)

    • No minimum weight regulations in aircrafts 😉

      Ballast can be an efficient solution to a problem but
      first order it is just dead weight taking away payload.

      • Wait until an Airbus gets to light compared to a Boeing. FAA will introduce quickly minimum weight regulations. Boeing 2707 failed and harsh noise regulations were set up to keep the Concorde down 😉

  4. Pingback: How the Scimitar has an advantage over winglets | Leeham News and Comment

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