LONDON – On February 3, Lufthansa Cargo completed the first modification of one of its Boeing 777 Freighters with AeroSHARK surface technology.
Lufthansa Cargo’s First 777 Freighter AeroSHARK Modification
Lufthansa Cargo and the world’s first freighter aircraft have been successfully modified with the AeroSHARK surface technology following the completion of scheduled maintenance at Lufthansa Technik in Frankfurt, Germany.
The aircraft in question is one of Lufthansa Cargo’s 11 Boeing 777 Freighters, registered as D-ALFA, coincidentally, this was Lufthansa Cargo’s first-ever Boeing 777 Freighter that they had received back in November 2013 and aptly named, ‘Good Day, USA’.
The AeroSHARK film was applied to the aircraft during scheduled maintenance between January 14 till February 2 and the application of the AeroSHARK film was completed well before the aircraft’s scheduled maintenance come to an end.
D-ALFA set off on its maiden service on February 3, according to data from RadarBox, on flight LH8410 departing Frankfurt at 05.07 am heading to Bangalore in India which arrived at 17.48 pm.
After a nearly two-hour turnaround, the aircraft then continued its LH8410 flight towards Chengdu in China, departing Bangalore at 19.29 pm and arriving at Chengdu at 02.15 am.
Lufthansa Technik obtained a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) back in December 2022 to apply AeroSHARK technology to two types of Boeing 777, those being the Freighter and the 300ER.
Lufthansa Cargo will gradually apply the AeroSHARK film to the remainder of their Boeing 777 Freighter fleet. Not only this but it is expected that SWISS will also apply the technology to their 12 Boeing 777-300ERs.
About AeroSHARK Surface Technology…
AeroSHARK surface technology is a film that can be applied to the surface of aircraft, thereby creating a microscopic structure that mimics shark skin.
The AeroSHARK film consists of riblets which are small ribs that are approximately 50 micrometers in size that help optimize the airflow of the aircraft fuselage and engine nacelles.
Lufthansa Technik has said that they estimate the AeroSHARK surface technology can provide fuel savings of up to 1%, meaning once adopted across Lufthansa Cargo’s Boeing 777 Freighter fleet, they will see an annual fuel saving of more than 4,000 metric tons as well as 13,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions.
If you would like more detailed information on the AeroSHARK surface technology, we covered this in a deeper analysis here.
Lufthansa Cargo Executive Comments…
Lufthansa Cargo’s Chairwoman of the Executive Board and Chief Executive Officer, Dorothea van Boxberg, has commented on the company’s latest major milestone, saying, “We are proud to be able to operate our entire freighter fleet even more efficiently in the future thanks to sharkskin technology and to further reduce the carbon footprint of our modern fleet.”
“Our investments for the introduction of AeroSHARK bring us closer to our goal of being 100 percent CO2 neutral in the air by 2050; on the ground, we would like to achieve this goal as early as 2030.”
It is highly likely that we’ll start to see other operators begin to apply AeroSHARK surface technology to their fleets.
Given the advantages that the film provides in fuel saving, it’s certainly worth the investment, which will help reduce carbon emissions across the entire aviation sector, edging closer to the goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.