United Airlines to Save with New Winglets

Travel News Asia Latest Travel News Podcasts Videos Friday, 19 July 2013

A United Airlines Boeing 737-800 aircraft retrofitted with the new Split Scimitar Winglet has carried out its maiden test flight in the United States.

The advanced winglet improves on the existing blended winglets United currently has on its next generation 737 fleet.

In January United became the launch customer for the winglet, when it made a firm commitment with Aviation Partners Boeing to retrofit its 737-800 fleet. In June, United said it would also retrofit its 737-900ER fleet. The retrofit programme will see existing aluminum winglet tip caps on these aircraft replaced with the new aerodynamically shaped winglet tip cap, and a new Scimitar-tipped ventral strake added.

United expects the new Split Scimitar winglet - which has displayed significant aircraft drag reduction - to result in fuel savings of around two percent for the 737.

Once the Split Scimitar Winglets are installed, the combined winglet technology installed on Uniteds 737, 757, and 767 fleet is expected to save the airline more than 200 million dollars per year in jet fuel costs.

The airline plans to begin retrofitting its 737-800 and 737-900ER fleet with the new winglet starting early 2014, once testing and FAA certification of the winglets is complete.

"We are always looking for opportunities to reduce fuel expense by improving the efficiency of our fleet. The Next-Generation 737 Split Scimitar Winglet will provide a natural hedge against rising fuel prices while simultaneously reducing carbon emissions, said Ron Baur, Uniteds Vice President of Fleet.

United Airlines, Boeing, Winglet, Scimitar

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