First Boeing 777 with new Surface technology takes off on passenger flights
The fuselage and engine nacelles of the aircraft were recently fitted with approximately 950 square meters of so-called Riblet films, which replicate the flow-efficient properties of shark skin in order to reduce drag. Flow simulations have already identified a savings potential of just over one percent for this type of aircraft. The first scheduled flights with the aircraft registered as HB-JNH will now serve to validate this savings potential in daily flight operations.
Annual savings of around 400 tons of kerosene
Thanks to its special surface structure of microscopic ribs – known as Riblets – the film reduces the frictional resistance of this aircraft’s outer skin by just over one percent, according to the calculations and flow simulations. As a result, fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are also reduced by the same order of magnitude. For this Boeing 777-300ER of Swiss, this would equate to annual savings of around 400 tons of kerosene and more than 1,200 tons of carbon dioxide.
The modification of the HB-JNH began at the end of August and culminated in several test flights on September 8 and 9. During these flights, it had to be demonstrated in detail that the modification had no negative impact on the operational safety and handling of the Boeing 777. As soon as the calculated savings potential has been validated in actual flight operations, the full-scale roll-out at the launch customers Swiss and Lufthansa Cargo is planned to begin.