Boeing 767-300ERs with Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) winglets are now "viable candidates" for conversion to freighters under a US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval announced on 17 May.

According to APB, developers of blended winglets for a wide variety of Boeing aircraft along with Aviation Partners Incorporated, the approval demonstrates "compatibility for installing blended winglets" on a Boeing 767 converted freighter (BCF).

"The development assures that Boeing 767-300ERs with blended winglets are viable candidates for future conversions to freighters by Boeing," says APB.

Priced at $2.26 million, not including installation, the GKN-built composite material blended winglets for the 767-300ER can cut fuel burn by up to 5.4% at cruise. The installation package adds 1,354kg (2,984lb) to the weight of the aircraft, but increases payload capability by as much as 7,412kg.

"Blended winglet technology installed on a Boeing 767-300ER/F/BCF reduces fuel burn by up to 500,000 gallons per aircraft per year while reducing carbon dioxide emissions by over 5,000 tons per year," says Boeing. "Blended winglets can also extend the range of a Boeing 767-300ER/F/BCF by as much as [320nm], or increase the payload of the aircraft by as much as [7,257kg]."

Boeing and APB, in addition to collaboration and data sharing, separately invested in design changes for the blended winglet and the 767-300ER BCF, respectively, "to assure compatibility and bring the unique solution to market", the companies say.

APB says it has taken firm orders and options for 379 Boeing 767-300ER/F/BCF blended winglet systems.

The company estimates that its blended winglets, now flying on more than 4,400 Boeing aircraft, have saved airlines worldwide more than 3.1 billion gallons of fuel to date. The 767-300ER winglets received FAA certification in 2009.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news