SocalApproach
Topic Author
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:08 pm

Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:10 pm

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  
 
kdhurst380
Posts: 344
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2010 1:52 am

RE: Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:30 pm

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]
 
SocalApproach
Topic Author
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:08 pm

RE: Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Tue Feb 05, 2013 8:26 pm

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...
 
strfyr51
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RE: Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Tue Feb 05, 2013 8:55 pm

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.
 
SocalApproach
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Posts: 173
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RE: Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:06 pm

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.
 
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kc135topboom
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RE: Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:11 pm

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.
 
kdhurst380
Posts: 344
Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2010 1:52 am

RE: Airbus/Boeing Winglights/Configuration Question

Wed Feb 06, 2013 12:43 am

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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