Date of Completion


Document Type

Honors College Thesis


Mechanical Engineering

Thesis Type

Honors College

First Advisor

Dr. William Louisos

Second Advisor

Dr. Frederic Sansoz

Third Advisor

Dr. Jason Meyers


Winglet, Angle, Wing, Drag, Lift, CFD


Winglets are systems that are used on aircraft to reduce drag and ultimately save money on fuel and pollution costs. A winglet exists on the end of a wing to reduce the amount of drag that affects each wing during flight. In 2020, these winglet systems are fixed and vary between aircraft based on different flight and geometry characteristics. The result of this is that each winglet is only optimal at a single design point or a single flight scenario. A variable angle winglet system would allow the winglet to be optimal at multiple design points. In this experiment, a variable-angle winglet system is investigated based on different angles of attack, altitudes, and speeds. The results are found using computational fluid dynamics and wind tunnel testing. In the preliminary experiments it was found that the differences in air speed, altitude, and pitch for each flight condition affect the optimal cant angle significantly. The significance demonstrates the practicality of further research regarding potential prototyping and implementation.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.