Monday, November 1, 2021

Virgin Australia Boeing B737-800 VH-YIT Calls into Mackay Airport now with Split Scimitar Winglets

On Sunday 31 October, Virgin Australia Boeing B737-800 VH-YIT was noted calling into Mackay Airport, making its first visit into Central Queensland after recently returning from maintenance where it was retrofitted with new Split Scimitar winglets.

VH-YIT operated as VOZ605/608, flying to Mackay Airport from and then back to Brisbane - where it is pictured above.  It later also operated as VOZ1497/8 from Brisbane to Hamilton Island Airport and back.

VH-YIT is the fourth of possibly five Boeing B737-800s to be retrofitted with the new Split Scimitar winglets.  VH-YIT spent much of September at Hong Kong undergoing planned maintenance where it is believed they were fitted.  It returned to Australia at the start of the month but has been operating in Western Australia for much of October.

The Split Scimitar winglets, which have been named after a type of Middle Eastern sword with a curved blade, aim to reduce drag and improve fuel efficiency.  It features a split tip, with one part curved upwards at the end of the wing and a second tip pointing downwards and backwards at an angle.

The winglets, developed by Aviation Partners Boeing, have been available for retrofit on existing Boeing B737 Next Generation aircraft (B737-600, -700, -800 and -900/900ER series aircraft) since 2014.  Virgin is the first airline in Australia to introduce the winglets into service.

The three other of the five Boeing B737-800s to be retrofitted with the Split Scimitar winglets were VH-YIV, VH-YIR and VH-YIS - see Blog posts below.

Photos taken by Adam Brown  ©

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