The patent's inventors are Edmond, George (Yatton, GB); Monaghan, Thomas (Croydon, GB).
This patent was filed on
From the background information supplied by the inventors, news correspondents obtained the following quote: "The present invention is concerned with an aircraft lighting device. More specifically, the present invention is concerned with an aircraft wingtip device and associated lighting arrangement for illumination of the inward and/or outward faces of the wingtip device.
"Wingtip devices are becoming increasingly common on commercial aircraft. Aside from the reduction of lift induced drag caused by wingtip vortices, wingtip devices also offer a vertically oriented area of the aircraft on which to place advertising and logos which are visible by both the passengers (on the fuselage facing, or inward, side) and by third parties (on the opposite, or outward, side).
"It is generally desirable to illuminate the surfaces of the wingtip device in poorly lit conditions, to improve visibility for passengers and passers-by.
"Because wingtip devices are often designed into existing airframes, there is limited ability to integrate illumination devices into the wing itself in order to project onto the fuselage facing side of the wingtip device. As such, in dark conditions, the logo and/or advertising on the wingtip device is not visible. In addition, because there is no structure outboard of the wingtip device, there is no component on which a lighting arrangement can be placed in order to project onto that side either.
"It will be noted that logos and advertising on the vertical tail faces are illuminated by lighting systems positioned on the horizontal tail stabilisers. Because the vertical tail was integrated into the original airframe design, provision for illumination is made when the aircraft is designed in the first place. This is often not the case for wingtip devices which are integrated into the airframe when it is redesigned or upgraded. Furthermore, the solutions used for vertical tail plane illumination are not suitable for wingtips, not least because there is no structure on which to mount the illumination device outboard of the wingtip devices.
"It is an object of the present invention to provide an apparatus capable of illumination of both the inward and outward facing sides of a wingtip device."
Supplementing the background information on this patent, VerticalNews reporters also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent: "According to the present invention there is provided an aircraft wing tip device assembly comprising a wing tip device defining a first end for attachment to a part of an aircraft wing, a second, free end and a lighting device arranged to project light onto a face of the wing tip device from a location proximate the second end.
"Advantageously, provision of a lighting device within the wingtip device itself allows for illumination to be provided without design changes to the airframe outside of the wingtip (e.g. the wing).
"Preferably, the lighting device comprises a light source and a light emission region, in which the light source is positioned remote from the light emission region, and light is transmitted from the light source to the light emission region along a light path.
"The light source may be connected to the light emission region by a fibre optic cable defining the light path.
"Alternatively, the light source is arranged to project light towards the light emission region.
"Preferably, the lighting device comprises a reflector assembly in the light path to direct light from the light source towards the light emission region.
"Preferably, the reflector assembly is configured to reflect the light by a total of 160 to 200 degrees.
"Preferably, the light source is positioned proximate the first end of the wing tip device.
"Preferably, the lighting device comprises a light source proximate the second end.
"Preferably, the lighting device comprises an LED.
"Preferably, the lighting device is a self-contained, powered lighting module which is removably installed in the wing tip device.
"Preferably, an aerodynamically shaped glazing unit.
"Preferably, the wing tip device defines a protrusion of the face, which protrusion is configured such that light from the lighting device projects at least partially from the protrusion back onto the face."
For the URL and additional information on this patent, see: Edmond, George; Monaghan, Thomas. Aircraft Lighting Device. U.S. Patent Number 8506138, filed
Keywords for this news article include: Advertising,
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