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Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question  
User currently offlineSocalApproach From United States of America, joined Feb 2013, 99 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 2247 times:

Please move if this should be somewhere else. This is a question that I have always wondered and it may come off as a bit silly why but I am curious none the less. It seems to me that Boeing aircraft have more lights than Airbus Aircraft. To understand where I am coming from I am talking about things like how Boeing has the Green and Red Nav lights as does Airbus but Boeing has the bright white light on the trailing edge of the wing while the A320 series A330/A340 does not. Even on the old generation 737s at WN they have the lights under the wings to assist. Airbus has the double strobe feature that Boeing does not.

My question is why does Airbus not have their winglights configured like Boeing. The Aircraft are alot harder to spot at night .Is it to tell the difference between the 2? Is there something requiring Boeing to have more lights than Airbus? Is it cost saving? Is it just a feature that cannot happen with the fences? What about when the NEO arrives with the blended winglets? Will Airbus have the trailing edge nav light like Boeing then? Sorry for my ignorance  

6 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinekdhurst380 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2010, 174 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 2190 times:

The trailing edge lights that you speak of on the older 737's retract/deploy with the flaps, I would be taking an educated guess, but this may use the same logic as the 'eyebrows', visual sight was much more important back in the day than it is now. Strobes are a different ball game, it would seem to be manufacturer preference. Worth noting that the double Airbus strobe is actually two separate units that flash alternately.

If you ever notice the white lights on the wingtip of the older 737's, this is a logo light, and it's only illuminated, again, during take off/landing. Airbus have these lights but they are on the horizontal stabiliser so aren't visible. I've heard it makes them difficult to replace too, so many airlines tend to not bother once the bulbs go.

[Edited 2013-02-05 11:30:46]

User currently offlineSocalApproach From United States of America, joined Feb 2013, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 2042 times:

Thanks for the response. I didn't want to go through an entire FAR/AIM book to figure out if this was a requirement for each aircraft to be configured the way they were. At least I know its not some regulation based on size of aircraft etc...

User currently offlinestrfyr51 From United States of America, joined Apr 2012, 1099 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1962 times:
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The lights you speak of are Position lights and are primarily for OTHER airliners to identify them in the evening and in in climate weather, The Airbus has the same lights on the Tail sys 1 and sys 2 though there are no trailing edge wing position lights. Airbus has no provision for them on their wing tip though they could be retrofitted very easily if they were necessary.

User currently offlineSocalApproach From United States of America, joined Feb 2013, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1919 times:

Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 3):
if they were necessary

I guess my reaction to that would be why does Boeing regard it as necessary then and why does Airbus regard it as not necessary. If Boeing is doing it for a safety point of view I would think Airbus would also like to be as competitive in that dept as any manufacturer they are competing against. Thank you also for the information.


User currently offlineKC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12128 posts, RR: 51
Reply 5, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 1894 times:

These lights are also navigation lights, just as the red and green wingtip lights are. They are a fall back to the days of ships, which are also required to have them. They can be used at night so a pilot can determine which direction another airplane is going, and on which side he can safely pass that aircraft, hense the red light (do not pass this side) and the green light (pass this side). The white tail light indicates the other aircraft is going away from you, or is in front of you.

The wingtip and tail strobe lights are not required on aircraft, but do enhance the aircraft at night or in weather.

The final set of require lighting is the anticollision lights, these are the red strobes or rotating lights atop and bottom of the fuselarge, they can be white, but most are red.

The landing and taxi lights are high powered white lights.

But all Boeing and Airbus aircraft have at least the basic navigation and anticollision lighting along with taxi and landing lights. This is an ICAO requirement.


User currently offlinekdhurst380 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2010, 174 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (1 year 5 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 1701 times:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 5):
The wingtip and tail strobe lights are not required on aircraft, but do enhance the aircraft at night or in weather.

I can't say I've ever seen an aircraft not using these, even during daylight hours. I would suppose that it might not be regulation in all parts of the world but they certainly are in the UK/Europe.


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