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Airbus Tests Futuristic Wings

The project turns to nature to improve wing aerodynamics and performance.

Airbus recently completed wind-tunnel tests of the eXtra Performance Wing demonstrator. 

Launched in September, the project turns to nature to improve wing aerodynamics and performance. 

The hope is that the wings can be compatible with any future aircraft configuration and propulsion system. 

The concept was first introduced for AlbatrossONE, a project that tested semi-aeroelastic hinged wings that unlocked during wind gusts or turbulence. 

The new prototype will add gust sensors, pop-up spoilers and multifunctional trailing edges, to enable the active control of the wing.

For the test, the wings will be outfitted to a remote-controlled Cessna Citation VII business jet. 

The company wants to validate the concept in low-speed wind-tunnel testing before moving towards flight tests. 

The demonstrator is an Airbus UpNext project, the subsidiary created to fast-track future technologies.

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