Embraer is working on aerodynamic improvements to its E-Jet family designed to yield up to a 5% reduction in fuel burn for new-build aircraft by the end of 2014.
A new winglet design and "some cleaning of the aerodynamics" will yield a 5% efficiency gain for the E-170/175 models, while the larger E-190/195 versions will see a more modest 3% improvement, says Embraer commercial aviation president Paulo Cesar Silva. "The wingtips will deliver most of it," he adds.
Also in the pipeline are increased maintenance intervals and a structural and prognostics health management system, to be introduced by the end of 2013. "Data will be released that could anticipate the need for maintenance," says Cesar.
Avionics improvements and a redesigned cabin interior will follow in 2015, he says.
Embraer is meanwhile studying a re-engining of the E-Jet family for entry into service around 2018.
As of 31 March 2012 the E-Jet orderbook stood at 1,063 aircraft, plus 689 options, of which 823 had been delivered. The programme was launched in 1999 and the first aircraft was delivered in March 2004. E-Jet models are in service with 61 airlines, based in 42 countries.