Fuel-minded fashion statement

Can Joe do it again?

The man who made tall winglets de rigueur among airliners after beginning with the Boeing Business Jet, Joe Clark hopes to repeat that fuel-saving bit of avant aero style with the split scimitar. Essentially a ventral extension to his Aviation Partners, Inc. "blended winglet," the new appendage is being offered as an add-on mod. The cost? About $500,000-550,000.

He says the mod will improve fuel burn by about 2.5% and thus expects the airlines will be adapting it as well. Since there are about 5,000 Boeings now operating with API winglets, the opportunity for a repeat performance is looking good, and profitable.

API is expecting FAA approval in the very near future and hopes to deliver 800 units next year and 1,000 the year after.

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Aviation Week is approaching its 100th anniversary in 2016. In a series of blogs, our editors highlight editorial content from the magazine's long and rich history.


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