Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


ARMLIGHT — Result In Brief

Project ID: 298176
Funded under: FP7-JTI
Country: Spain
Domain: Fundamental Research , Industrial Technologies, Energy, Transport and Mobility, Climate Change and Environment, Digital Economy

Actuator pushes the envelope in electric landing gear actuation components

An EU initiative has introduced a cutting-edge actuator designed for tomorrow’s all-electric aircraft (AEA) applications.
Actuator pushes the envelope in electric landing gear actuation components
The use of electrical power-on-demand systems over hydraulic ones are becoming the norm in all new aircraft developments. The continuing need to reduce overall fuel burn on aircraft leads to the use of more electrically powered systems. The benefits of electric actuators are clear, and some applications are already being targeted for the introduction of electric motors as a replacement for hydraulic alternatives, or even the removal of complete hydraulic systems. Actuator designs are leaning towards the AEA concept. This may seem feasible nowadays, but AEA poses major challenges that need to be overcome.

The EU-funded ARMLIGHT (Design, development and manufacturing of an electro-mechanical actuator and test rig for aircrafts main landing gear actuation systems) project designed, manufactured, modified and tested an electromechanical actuator (EMA). The aim was to support the study and validation of a future, complete all-electric landing gear actuation system.

Project partners investigated and evaluated various configurations to determine the optimum system architecture from a technical perspective. They considered volume, mass, electrical consumption, power-to-mass ratio, reliability, durability and safety.

Researchers tested and validated the EMA system in virtual scenarios at model level, and conducted real-life experiments of the complete solution through on-ground and in-flight campaigns. These trials ensured reliable, safe and efficient performance of the prototype. For validation purposes, they designed, manufactured and fine-tuned on-ground and in-flight test benches.

The EMA is based on a modular and efficient approach that integrates easily interchangeable electric and mechanical components with sensors and control strategies. This enables automatic and autonomous safety control. It includes a dedicated electronic control unit, built-in test equipment to detect potential failures and a device to ensure compatibility with emergency actuation.

ARMLIGHT’s fully electrically powered actuation system concept considered modularity, compactness, easy assembly, user friendliness, process autonomy and safety in a complete way. This will lead to a positive environmental impact, boosting the quality and reliability of main landing gear actuation systems.

Related information


Landing gear actuation, all-electric aircraft, ARMLIGHT, electromechanical actuator
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