Airline Industry Efficiency

Essay by fvalleveCollege, UndergraduateB, December 2008

download word file, 6 pages 5.0

Being one of the most energy consuming forms of transportation, the aviation industry has to revolutionize their methods in order to cut their losses. The current state of the economy has caused many businesses to re-evaluate their processes. The airline industry has to come up with more efficient ways to run their companies to effectively control commerce. Some ways that they are planning to accomplish this task is to cut back on flights, fuel consumption, and alternate sources of energy.

Airlines plan to update their fleets with planes built for more fuel efficiency. Fuel accounts for thirty-five to forty-five percent of an airline’s budget. To lower that amount airlines are doing a number of things to improve the efficiency of their planes. They are updating their older planes with newer engines that burn less fuel and they are adding winglets which help increase the range of the plane. In some cases the airlines are opting to just buy new planes.

Airlines are also focusing on ways to reduce weight. This includes not offering meals on certain flights and cutting back on the amount of extra fuel each plane carries.

New engines use a number of design techniques to improve efficiency. Engines are now larger which allows for better airflow with the ability for having a bigger fan. That gives a better fuel to air ratio which in turn produces more thrust without increasing the amount of fuel used. New engines like the Pratt & Whitney PW 4000 has a fan with a 100 inch diameter that produces 65,000 – 70,000 pounds of thrust. Engines are also using computers that automatically adjust the fuel to air mixture as you ascend or descend.

Winglets also help conserve fuel by increasing an airplane’s lift by up to five percent without a large increase...