Flex Your Wings

Monday 20th January 2014

How would you feel if you looked out of the aeroplane window to see the wings flexing - slightly perturbed no doubt! But flexibility built into an aeroplane wing could be an energy and fuel saver!

Normal wings have a major weakness, you’ll be delighted to know, at the joint where the main wing meets the trailing flaps. So a U.S, company, FlexSys, have been designing a more aerodynamic solution with FlexFoil, which is seamless and offers a variable geometry airfoil system delivering around 12% fuel savings.

FlexSys say that their FlexFoil is made from aerospace materials, and does away with those ‘weak joints’ as it is seamlessly integrated into the wing on the trailing edge. Plus it doesn’t need to be just for new planes as it's retrofitted.

When FlexFoil is retrofitted it can cut fuel consumption by 4% to 8%, and up to 12 percent for what they call "clean sheet" builds, say FlexSys. It also reduces wind noise on landing by up to 40%, and reduces the build-up of ice and debris.

They are planning for a Gulfstream to fly with FlexiFoil retrofitted wings in July at NASA’s Dyden Flight Research Center.

Watch the video below - FlexSys reckon the technology can be used on lots of applications.

So - if those wings seem to flex, they may very well be - but don’t worry, it is saving energy and fuel!

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/9ZpAHxMj5lU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>iframe>

Source: FlexSys

Categories: General, Reviews, Technology

Monday 20th January 2014

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