Mark Hannant

New contracts worth well over $1 billion have been announced by Lucas Aerospace.

The UK electronics giant will supply for Fairchild Aerospace's new 728JET the complete fly-by-wire flight control system - a contract worth £600 million ($960 million) - and a major proportion of the primary and secondary flight controls and thrust reverser actuation on the Airbus A340-500/600.

Taking into account anticipated aftermarket sales, the Airbus business is worth approximately £320 million.

The Fairchild regional jet is the world's first application of a fly-by-wire flight control system with no mechanical reversion and will incorporate fully integrated electronics controls.

Production of the system, which comprises flaps, slats, stabiliser, aileron, spoiler, elevator and rudder, will take place in Europe and will include a team co-located at Fairchild Aerospace's site in Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany.


Speaking at the show, Ken Maciver, Lucas Aerospace president, was obviously delighted to have secured the business: "Lucas Aerospace is the most experienced flight controls supplier in the world, supplying the first fly-by-wire system in civil aircraft and having gained more than 400 million flight hours of experience with civil fly-by-wire controls.

"With that record, we believe we had the most to offer on the 728JET, and we were pleased to find that Fairchild Aerospace agreed," he said.

The contracts to supply Airbus are in addition to other contracts relating to the supply of engine controls to Rolls-Royce Trent engines announced earlier in 1998.

The new higher capacity versions of the A340 will be fitted with trimmable horizontal stabiliser acuators and rudder servo control actuators on the primary flight controls and the slat system on the secondary flight controls, all supplied by Lucas Aerospace. Deliveries will begin in 2001.

Source: Flight Daily News