Things With Wings

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  • Patents Reveal Boeing Low-Noise Ideas
    Posted by Graham Warwick 2:52 PM on Mar 14, 2011

    Don't hold your breath for Boeing to launch this design as a replacement for the 737...
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    All patent images: USPTO

    It's from a new US patent (number 7,900,865) granted on March 8 (and filed in December 2006) for an aircraft configuration that could reduce the engine noise (and infrared radiation) reaching the ground. The configuration mounts the engines above a broad inboard wing section and between canted tails to provide noise shielding.
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    Shielding both fan and jet noise from engines set so far back necessitates a forward-swept wing and canard foreplane. But the result is a significant reduction in line-of-sight to the engines as the aircraft passes overhead, as this view shows:
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    Another new patent awarded to Boeing on March 8 (number 7.900,868), and filed in December 2007, is for a noise-shielding configuration that looks more practical for near-term application, but could still be a bit too adventurous for a 2020-timeframe 737 replacement.
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    This mounts the engines above inboard wing sections that are extended aftwards to provide shielding of both jet and fan noise. This is reminiscent of the engine-over-wing VFW 614 and HondaJet and, while practical, does put the engines adjacent to the cabin.
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    Boeing's patent includes other embodiments of this noise shielding configuration, which perhaps serve to show how generic (rather than specific to a planned product) the idea really is. So probably best not to get too excited...
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    Tags: tw99, Boeing, patent

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