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Folding Wings: Highly Needed On 737 Replacement  
User currently offlinekaitak744 From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 2392 posts, RR: 3
Posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 2825 times:

The current 737 with winglets has a wingspan of 35.8 meters. A320 has a max wingspan of 34.1 meters.

These planes very nicely fit into Group III, Category C gates, which have a max span of 36 meters.

However, all the recent renditions of the 737 replacement Boeing is considering (or are being presented here on A.net) are set to have a much longer wingspan. This is obviously necessary to reduce drag (by increasing aspect ratio). However, if Boeing makes a 737 replacement that has a longer span than 36 meters, it will screw airport operations everywhere. I think it is about time they come up with a folding wing design, before requiring all airports to widen more than half their gates.

11 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31124 posts, RR: 85
Reply 1, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 2803 times:
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Folding wingtips are going to add weight and complexity. I don't know if the 737 tanks fuel in the wings, but if they do, that will impact fuel volume, as well.

If Boeing does go with a longer span for the 797, airlines and airports will adapt, just as they did to the 777-200ER when the folding-wingtip option was deleted because it allowed more fuel to be carried and an increased MTOW (due to being able to make the wing stronger).


User currently offlineRussianJet From Belgium, joined Jul 2007, 7714 posts, RR: 21
Reply 2, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 2743 times:

Surely such a feature would result in a maintenance nighmare? Can't imagine it would be very simple.


✈ Every strike of the hammer is a blow against the enemy. ✈
User currently offlinedl767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2484 times:

It seems like it might be needed if boeing does go with a 2-2-2 seating. With a wider body there will be a longer wingspan. Unless they can turn the fuselage into a more lift providing shape. It seems this would be pretty difficult to implement though, it never caught on with the 777. But the 797 will have to fit into existing 737/A320 gates otherwise it could become a real headache for airports

User currently offlineDL797 From United States of America, joined Mar 2011, 26 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2474 times:

Quoting kaitak744 (Thread starter):
The current 737 with winglets has a wingspan of 35.8 meters. A320 has a max wingspan of 34.1 meters.

These planes very nicely fit into Group III, Category C gates, which have a max span of 36 meters.

However, all the recent renditions of the 737 replacement Boeing is considering (or are being presented here on A.net) are set to have a much longer wingspan. This is obviously necessary to reduce drag (by increasing aspect ratio). However, if Boeing makes a 737 replacement that has a longer span than 36 meters, it will screw airport operations everywhere. I think it is about time they come up with a folding wing design, before requiring all airports to widen more than half their gates.


Boeing will not be buildling a narrowbody aircraft with a wingpsan so great that it throws 90% of all airport terminal layouts into turmoil. The largest variant might creap into 757 territory, but that would be it. The other variants be it two or three aircraft will be ADG-III wings with wider chords.


User currently offlinedfwrevolution From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 984 posts, RR: 51
Reply 5, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2457 times:

Quoting Stitch (Reply 1):
If Boeing does go with a longer span for the 797, airlines and airports will adapt, just as they did to the 777-200ER when the folding-wingtip option was deleted because it allowed more fuel to be carried and an increased MTOW (due to being able to make the wing stronger).

Agree completely. Experience with the 737NG Blended Winglets also shows that airlines are willing to invest in adapting their gate space if it will pay for efficiency in the air.


User currently offlineFlyNWA727 From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 305 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2443 times:

Not gonna happen. A major goal of the new 737 replacement, will be to reduce weight. Folding Wings add a lot of weight penalties. That's why that option was never taken up by any operator of the 777-200(ER). Folding Wings were an option but never exercised due to all of the extra weight associated with it.

[Edited 2011-03-08 15:09:00]


First flight aboard a Northwest B727-251ADV out of BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport, my hometown airport.
User currently offlinerwy04lga From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 3176 posts, RR: 8
Reply 7, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2387 times:

Quoting FlyNWA727 (Reply 6):
A major goal of the 737 will be to reduce weight. Folding Wings add a lot of weight penalties.

You meant the 797?



Just accept that some days, you're the pigeon, and other days the statue
User currently offlinekaitak744 From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 2392 posts, RR: 3
Reply 8, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2318 times:

Quoting dfwrevolution (Reply 5):
Agree completely. Experience with the 737NG Blended Winglets also shows that airlines are willing to invest in adapting their gate space if it will pay for efficiency in the air.

The blended winglets still keep the 737 within Group III (36 meters). Thus, they have no effect on gate space usage.

Quoting Stitch (Reply 1):
If Boeing does go with a longer span for the 797, airlines and airports will adapt, just as they did to the 777-200ER when the folding-wingtip option was deleted because it allowed more fuel to be carried and an increased MTOW (due to being able to make the wing stronger).

The 797 would be a much bigger deal. The 777s added wingspan only truly affected about a dozen airports. Having a 797 that is a category bigger would require EVERY airport in the world to change their gate layouts. I do not see that happening.


User currently offlineDL797 From United States of America, joined Mar 2011, 26 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2289 times:

Quoting dfwrevolution (Reply 5):
Agree completely. Experience with the 737NG Blended Winglets also shows that airlines are willing to invest in adapting their gate space if it will pay for efficiency in the air.

1. A lot of those gates where set up for ADG-III to start and there was therfore no adjustment at all, its also why the Sharklet on the A320 fits this footprint and why Boeing went with the winglets vs. the raked wingtip for the 737.
2. Many of them were also set up for 757s at 125-feet and therefore no adjustment while 757 shifted to now vacant DC-10 and L-1011 gates designed for 150-foot span aircraft in a downgauging process.

It would not be the same. Entire terminals would have to undergo major modifications to accomodate the relocation of boarding bridges with a substantial shift in wingspans of existing ADG-III aircraft. The loss ratio is 1 in 6 gates at 125-feet and 1 in 5 gates up to 140 feet. More if the terminal frontage isn't there.

[Edited 2011-03-08 14:53:11]

User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31124 posts, RR: 85
Reply 10, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2245 times:
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Quoting kaitak744 (Reply 8):
I do not see that happening.

Neither do I. Or if they do go up a category, it will only be by a few meters so airports and airlines should still be able to adapt to it. The 757's span was 38m, so maybe something like that.


User currently offlineDL797 From United States of America, joined Mar 2011, 26 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (3 years 7 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2193 times:



Quoting Stitch (Reply 10):
Neither do I. Or if they do go up a category, it will only be by a few meters so airports and airlines should still be able to adapt to it. The 757's span was 38m, so maybe something like that.

If its a four bird family, I think you get 2-3 birds with a 118 span and the largest 1 (or 2) with a sub 130-foot span (bigger than the 757 was before winglets, smaller than with because its a new wing). If its a three bird family the smaller two would be 118 and the larger around 130. 757's with winglets are already causing some havoc with gate layout mod options with older terminals.

[Edited 2011-03-08 15:03:27]

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