Airbus hints at sharklets for the A330

Hamburg
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Airbus is considering adapting its new 'sharklet' wing-tip for the A330 twinjet, a decision which could extend the life of the programme as the airframer continues to develop its A350.

The manufacturer is already testing the sharklet on an A320, and is aiming for certification by the end of the year. Sharklets will be an option on new A320s and standard on the A320neo.

But speaking during Airbus's annual briefing in Hamburg, chief operating officer for customers John Leahy said the carrier was thinking about the possibility of putting the sharklets on the A330. The type currently has winglets fitted.

The airframer has been studying a winglet retrofit option for the A320, which is likely to be based on the sharklet design.

Airbus delivered 87 A330s in 2011, the same number as in 2010, and the A330 secured 85 net orders last year.