All members of the current production Sharklet-equipped A320 Family have successfully earned European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification, following this month’s acceptance of the final version featuring these wingtip devices: the A319 powered by IAE International Aero Engines’ V2500 turbofan.
Sharklets, which offer up to a 4 per cent fuel burn reduction, are now certified on A319, A320 and A321 variants with both engine types – the CFM International CFM56 and IAE V2500 – as a result of a flight test and certification programme involving approximately 600 flight hours and several new-build aircraft.
Airbus delivered its first Sharklet-equipped jetliner – an A320 for AirAsia – in December 2012, following the initial EASA certification of these wingtip devices on the single-aisle product line’s cornerstone aircraft, fitted with CFM56 engines. Since then, Airbus has handed over its initial Sharklet-equipped A319 (a CFM56 variant to American Airlines in July) and A321 to Finnair this month.
These devices continue to prove their popularity with worldwide operators, as Airbus has delivered more than 125 aircraft outfitted with Sharklets to over 35 customers by early September – less than a year after their initial delivery.
The 2.4-metre-tall Sharklets are an option on Airbus’ new-build CEO (current engine option) single-aisle jetliners and will come standard on A320neo (new engine option) Family aircraft. By enhancing the aircraft’s aerodynamics, they reduce fuel burn and emissions, as well as add range and enable increased payload capability.