Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 31742
Diagnostic Investigation of Aircraft Performance at Different Winglet Cant Angles

Authors: Dinesh M., Kenny Mark V., Dharni Vasudhevan Venkatesan, Santhosh Kumar B., Sree Radesh R., V. R. Sanal Kumar


Comprehensive numerical studies have been carried out to examine the best aerodynamic performance of subsonic aircraft at different winglet cant angles using a validated 3D k-ω SST model. In the parametric analytical studies NACA series of airfoils are selected. Basic design of the winglet is selected from the literature and flow features of the entire wing including the winglet tip effects have been examined with different cant angles varying from 150 to 600 at different angles of attack up to 140. We have observed, among the cases considered in this study that a case, with 150 cant angle the aerodynamics performance of the subsonic aircraft during takeoff was found better up to an angle of attack of 2.80 and further its performance got diminished at higher angles of attack. Analyses further revealed that increasing the winglet cant angle from 150 to 600 at higher angles of attack could negate the performance deterioration and additionally it could enhance the peak CL/CD on the order of 3.5%. The investigated concept of variable-cant-angle winglets appears to be a promising alternative for improving the aerodynamic efficiency of aircraft.

Keywords: Aerodynamic efficiency, Cant-angle, Drag reduction, Flexible Winglets.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 3267


[1] Faye, R.; Laprete, R. Winter, M."Blended Winglets" Aero, No. 17, Boeing, January 2002.
[2] J.D. Anderson, Fundamentals of Aerodynamics, McGraw-Hill, New York, 2011.
[3] D. McLean, Understanding Aerodynamics Arguing from the Real Physics, Wiley-Blackwell, Chichester, 2013.
[4] P. Panagiotou, P. Kaparos, K. Yakinthos, Winglet design and optimization for a MALE UAV using CFD, Aerospace Science and Technology, Vol.39, December 2014, pp. 190–205.
[5] P. Bourdin, A. Gatto, and M. I. Friswell."Aircraft Control via Variable Cant-Angle Winglets", Journal of Aircraft, Vol. 45, No. 2, 2008, pp. 414-423.
[6] Langevin, G. S. and Overbey, P., “To Reality: Winglets,” NASA Langley Research Center, October 17, 2003.
[7] Bargsten, Clayton J.; Gibson, Malcolm T., NASA Innovation in Aeronautics: Select Technologies That Have Shaped Modern Aviation, NASA/TM-2011-216987. National Aeronautics and Space Administration. August 2011, pp. 15–21.
[8] M. Young, TheTechnical Writers Handbook.Mill Valley, CA: University Science, 1989.
[9] Faye, R.; Laprete, R Winter, M. "Wingtip Devices." Aero, No. 17, Boeing.
[10] Air & Space Magazine, “How Things Work: Winglets".September 1, 2001.
[11] Culick, F. E. C., “The Wright Brothers: First Aeronautical Engineersand Test Pilots”, AIAA Journal, Vol. 41, No. 6, June 2003, pp. 985–1006.
[12] A. Beechook , J. Wang “Aerodynamic Analysis of Variable Cant AngleWinglets for Improved Aircraft Performance”,Proceedings of the 19 International ConferenceonAutomation & Computing, Brunel University, London, UK,September 2013
[13] R. Hallion, “NASA’s Contributions to Aeronautics:Aerodynamics, Structures, Propulsion, and Controls”, Vol. 1, Washington, DC: NASA SP-2010-570-Vol 1, 2010, pp. 116-118.
[14] M. K. V. Sankrithi, B.J. Frommer, “Controllable Winglets”, United States Patent Document,Patent No. US2008/0308683, 2008.
[15] R. H. Grant, “Retractable Multiple Winglets”,United States Patent Document, Patent No. US2007/0262205, 2007.
[16] M. A. Azlin, C. F. Mat Taib, S. Kasolang, F. H. Muhammad,“CFD Analysis of Winglets at Low Subsonic Flow”,World Congress on Engineering 2011, Vol. 1, 2011, pp. 1-5
[17] A. Hossain, A. Rahman, P. Iqbal, M. Ariffin, M. Mazian, “DragAnalysis of an Aircraft Wing Model with and without BirdFeather like Winglet”,International Journal of Aerospace andMechanical Engineering , 6:1, 2012, pp. 8-13
[18] P. Marks, “Morphing Winglets Make for Greener Aircraft”, NewScientist , Issue 2692, 2009
[19] Jha, A. K., and KudvaSmart, J. N., “Morphing Aircraft Concepts,Classifications, and Challenges,” Structures and Materials 2004:Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart StructuresTechnologies, Proceedings of SPIE Vol. 5388, International Societyfor Optical Engineering, Bellingham, WA, 2004, pp. 213–224.
[20] Sanders, B., Eastep, F. E., and Forster, E., “Aerodynamic andAero-elastic Characteristics of Wings with Conformal Control Surfacesfor Morphing Aircraft,” Journal of Aircraft, Vol. 40, No. 1, Jan.–Feb. 2003, pp. 94–99.
[21] Raymer, D. P., Aircraft Design: A Conceptual Approach, AIAAEducation Series, AIAA, Reston, VA, 2006, p. 506.
[22] Bae, J. S., Seigler, T. M., and Inman, D. J., “Aerodynamic and StaticAero-elastic Characteristics of a Variable-Span Morphing Wing,”Journal of Aircraft, Vol. 42, No. 2, 2005, pp. 528–534.
[23] A.E. Von Doenhoff, “Investigation of the boundary layer about a symmetrical airfoil in a wind tunnel of low turbulence”, Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory, W.R. No. L.507, NACA, 1940.
[24] Henry, J. J., Blondeau, J. E., and Pines, D. J., “Stability Analysis forUAVs with a Variable Aspect Ratio Wing,” AIAA Paper 2005-2044, April 2005.
[25] Phil Croucher,Jar Professional Pilot Studies. Electrocution. 2005, pp. 2–11. ISBN 978-0-9681928-2-5.