Hi Fly To Trial Innovative 3 Pronged Eco Wingtip On Its Airbus A330

Hi Fly has today announced that it is introducing TRINITAIR, which is a creative retrofit wingtip solution. The Portuguese charter airline is looking to reduce fuel consumption during its Airbus A330 services by up to 2% with this initiative.

Hi Fly notes that CO2 emissions are cut by 3.16 kilograms for every kilogram of fuel saved during flight. Photo: Hi Fly

Overcoming hurdles

The airline will be the first operator in the world to launch these unique-looking wingtips. The carrier will apply them to one of its A330 aircraft for the product’s maiden test flight.

Notably, up to 40% of the total air resistance on a plane in cruise is a result of drag. So, those behind TRINITAIR are looking to address this aspect and offer “optimal circulation distribution.”

The Aircraft Performance Company (The APC) designed TRINITAIR. Altogether, the company sought to provide an economic solution that can be swiftly retrofitted to reduce downtime.

Hi Fly and the APC have joined up with the Mirpuri Foundation to bring TRINITAIR to life. Photo: Hi Fly

It all adds up

The APC managing director Harald Zirngibi explains that the winglets are airworthy within just a day due to their “Plug & Fly” approach. He further explained the benefit of the product, giving examples of the savings to be had.

“With its 3-finger wingtip solution, born from a sketch on a napkin, The APC is developing a new technology that enables aircraft to reduce its carbon footprint. The new winglet not only reduces fuel consumption, but also optimizes the overall performance. The engineers at The APC uses well-founded, patented knowledge of flow and structural mechanics to achieve an optimal circulation distribution of the outer wing by locally influencing or expanding the wingtip vortex,” Zirngibl shares in the release.

“A flight from Frankfurt to Hong Kong, for example, would save at least 1.2 tons of fuel. Applied to global air traffic, this means a considerable overall reduction in fuel and thus in CO2 emissions. The handling of available resources, cost effectiveness and pragmatism are also fundamental. Increasing the efficiency of valuable in-service aircraft will immediately benefit our environment.”

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The right steps

Hi Fly presently holds an A330-200, A330-300, and A330-900 within the fleet of the core airline and its subsidiary, Hi Fly Malta. Many of these units are new, but it holds one -200 preighter that is 23 years old, according to ch-aviation.

With the airline keen to increase efficiency, modern applications will go a long way to bring aircraft up to scratch. Furthermore, the operator will also benefit from the utilization of these wingtips on newer units.

Hi Fly A330neo
Hi Fly took delivery of its first Airbus A330neo just two years ago. Photo: Hi Fly

Hi Fly is showing its determination to optimize operations across the board. At the turn of the year, it announced the completion of a new maintenance hangar in Beja, Portugal. Additionally, it said goodbye to the inefficient Airbus A380 at the end of 2020.

Ultimately, initiatives such as these not only help balance the books in a time when every penny counts, they also contribute massively to sustainability targets. With the aviation industry looking to cut down on emissions, ventures such as TRINITAIR will be vital. Hi Fly is looking to offset all of its carbon dioxide emissions by the end of this year. Therefore, it will be excited about hitting the skies with these new wingtips.

What are your thoughts about these new wingtips? Also, what do you make of their appearance? Let us know what you think of them in the comment section.