tsugambler From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 302 posts, RR: 0 Posted (2 years 9 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4165 times:
Is there an aerodynamic advantage to the shape of the 787's nose, vs the traditionally-shaped noses of the 777 and 767? Or is there another reason for the "droopy" shape, such as position of cockpit windows?
DocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 16807 posts, RR: 57 Reply 1, posted (2 years 9 months 2 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4113 times:
As I understand, the most aerodynamic shape for the nose of a subsonic aircraft is the solid created by the rotation of a parabola around its axis. However, it's almost as good to use any shape that increases in cross section at the same rate as a parabola.
The problem with a straight-up parabola is that you have no good way to place the cockpit windows so that the pilots can see. That's why a droopy nose helps.
As it happens, the shape of the nose isn't that radical. The Comet had an almost identical nose. So did many of the early airliners. I don't know why Boeing moved away from it. Probably issues of cost and ease of manufacture.
tsugambler From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 302 posts, RR: 0 Reply 2, posted (2 years 9 months 2 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4110 times:
Although I think the 787 is overall a beautiful aircraft, the "droopy" nose is probably the part I like the least. I think my favorite "face" on an airliner is the DC-10/MD-11--fantastic windows and gorgeous shape!
mrocktor From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1645 posts, RR: 51 Reply 5, posted (2 years 9 months 1 week 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 3479 times:
The 787 shape is the current traditional shape (see E-jets, FD728, CSeries, SSJ, etc. etc.). Modern computational fluid dynamics plus the fact that everyone flies in the same atmosphere - unsurprisingly the same general shape tends to be most efficient.