Analytical Methods

Aviation Partners Blended Winglets

Aviation Partners is known worldwide for their patented blended winglets. Blended winglets improve the performance of aircraft by optimizing the lift distribution on the aircraft which results in less induced drag. The reduction in drag increases the range and improves climb rate of an aircraft. The aircraft which have been modified with blended winglets have seen fuel consumption drop by 4% to 7%. Today over 4,000 winglet sets have been installed worldwide on a variety of aircraft.

  • 737-300/500
  • 737-700/800/900
  • 757-200/300
  • 767-300ER/F
  • Hawker 800 SP/XP2
  • Falcon 900/2000
  • Gulfstream II

AMI assisted in the design and certification of the winglets on these aircraft. Our primary contributions were in predicting the drag performance of the various winglets under consideration. In addition to drag prediction, AMI has performed aerodynamic load calculations.

Drag Prediction

In order to design their winglets, Aviation Partners comes to AMI for our industry leading aerodynamic analysis capabilities. At AMI we have a variety of CFD tools for predicting aircraft drag and the engineers with experience in employing them. Over the course of the various winglet programs, AMI has gained the expertise in predicting increments in drag resulting from the various winglet configurations. The drag predictions have been then validated in flight test.

Static Loads

As part of the design process, the aerodynamic loads on the wings must be evaluated in order to ascertain the appropriate amount of structural reinforcement required in the wing. AMI uses CFD in conjunction with conservative engineering techniques to predict the static wing loading on the aircraft throughout the flight envelope. These predictions have been accepted for use in the certification process.