Commercial Aircraft Solutions

 

Flight controls

Fly-By-Wire

With more than 30 years of experience – and an installed base of 15,000 aircraft – we’re a market leader in the design, development, and production of flight control systems (FCS) for commercial aircraft. We were the first to introduce fly-by-wire (FBW) in civil applications with the Airbus 310 aircraft.

Our flight control portfolio

  • Primary flight control (fly-by-wire "FBW")
  • Secondary/slats and flaps (high lift) light controls and monitoring
  • Actuator control electronics
  • Remote electronics units
  • Rudder and yaw control
  • Stabilizer control and monitoring
  • Spoiler control electronics and monitoring
  • Active inceptor systems
  • Digital FBW control systems
  • Optionally manned flight control systems
  • Autopilot controls
  • Ground collision avoidance systems
  • Rate and acceleration sensors
  • Vehicle management systems
  • Prognostics and health management

Supported aircraft

  • Airbus: A320
  • Bell: 525
  • Boeing: 737, 747, 767, 777, and 747-8 (in production)
  • Bombardier: CRJ and CSeries
  • Embraer: Legacy 400/500 and KC-390 (in development)
  • Gulfstream: G500/G600
  • Mitsubishi: MRJ

Learn more about our Flight control products (click each for details)


Primary flight control computers

Primary Flight Control Computers

We're proud to offer a portfolio of stick-to-surface flight control avionics designed with performance and safety in mind.

Capabilities

  • The primary flight control computers (FCC) – sometimes referred to as primary flight control electronics (FCE) – are located in the aircraft electronic equipment (EE-Bay)
  • Normally three FCCs are installed on an airplane
  • The FCC computes and transmits all normal mode primary flight control surface actuator commands (rudder, elevators, ailerons, flaperons, and horizontal stabilizer as well as the multi-functional spoilers and ground spoilers) to control and maintain normal flight for use by the actuator control electronics (ACE)
  • FCCs are designed to provide full flight functions
  • The FCC performs pre-flight functions to verify the electronics dispatch integrity as well as ground maintenance functions

Data interface capabilities

  • ARINC gateways
  • Data concentration and distribution
  • Flight data acquisition
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Active control sidesticks

Four Sticks

Our active control sidesticks (ACS) – also called active inceptor systems (AIS) – provide pilots with the tactile cues they want, giving them the ultimate in situational awareness and control while flying the aircraft.

Capabilities

  • Enables the future integration of flight control functions
  • Utilizes position sensing and smart actuation (rather than springs and dampers, as in a passive stick or inceptor) to change forces felt by the pilot in real time
  • Force feedback can be used to provide cues, warn of mode engagements or impending flight envelop limits
  • The associated gradients and stops are fully programmable in real time
  • The variable feel can also cater for a wide pilot range

Benefits

  • Ability to link controls across the cockpit so that each pilot can feel the forces and see the displacements generated by each other
  • Offers significant weight and volume savings over mechanical controls
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Slat & flap electronic control units

Slat & Flap Electronic Control Units

Slat & flap electronic control units (SFECU) are also referred to as high lift or secondary flight controls. These units limit take-off and landing speeds by increasing wing high lift.

Capabilities

  • The SFECU is installed in the equipment bays in the body of the aircraft
  • The SFECU controls the slats and flaps (on the wings) that are utilized during take-offs and landings
  • The primary purpose of the slats and flaps is to make the area of the wing bigger, thus enabling the aircraft to fly slower
  • The slats and flaps do not make the aircraft fly slower, they increase lift which enables the pilot to control the speed
  • The slats and flaps are extended and retracted, whereas the spoilers are raised and lowered
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Actuator control electronics

Actuator Control Electronics

Actuator control electronics (ACE) are part of the flight-critical and essential fly-by-wire (FBW) system. Actuators have one purpose – they move something. They may rotate an object, open or close a device, or push a surface up or down, but they always put something into motion.

Capabilities

  • The actuator control electronics are located in the aircraft electronic equipment bay (EE-Bay)
  • ACEs either directly control or indirectly control (via remote electronics units) the aircraft’s primary flight-critical surface (rudder, elevators, ailerons, flaperons, and horizontal stabilizers) as well as the multi-functional spoilers and ground spoilers to control and maintain normal flight
  • The ACEs work in conjunction with the primary flight control computers (FCCs) to provide all aspects of normal flight control modes and handling qualities
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Remote electronics units

Remote Electronics Units

Remote electronics units (REU) are distributed electronics that reside close to or are mounted on the actuator to provide local control of the actuator. The REU receives commands and processes incoming and outgoing signals for the functions necessary to control the actuators.

Capabilities

  • Each REU controls two hydraulic actuators and one electro-mechanical channel; in the event of a flight control computer failure, the REUs take over primary control of the aircraft surfaces
  • The REUs area a dual lane, control-monitor design that ensures integrity of the actuator command
  • Based on the platform flight control architecture, there are up to 11 REUs per aircraft
  • REUs weigh approximately four pounds and have been designed for non-pressurized in-wing applications
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