On board the Boeing 777X
Liebherr has been selected to manufacture the folding wing tip system, the main gear steering system as well as actuators, hydraulic motor and power drive unit for the high lift leading edge and high lift trailing edge of the aircraft. The company manufactures the trailing edge actuators based on Boeing’s design (built-to-print), while for the leading edge actuators, Boeing entrusted Liebherr-Aerospace with the design and manufacturing of the units (built-to-spec).
Boeing Commercial Airplanes in November 2013 launched the airplane at the Dubai Airshow with 259 orders and commitments from four customers. Production of the 777X began in 2017, the first flight took place at the beginning of 2020 and first delivery is targeted for 2022.
The 777X has two variants, the 777-8 and the 777-9. The 777X features new engines, new composite wings, and technologies from the Boeing 787.
The 777X introduces the latest innovative technologies, including the most advanced, fuel-efficient commercial engine ever. In addition, the fourth-generation 777X composite wing has a longer span than today’s 777. Its folding, raked wingtip and optimized span deliver greater efficiency, significant fuel savings and complete airport gate compatibility.Learn more about Liebherr flight control systems
Relying on its experience in high-lift systems, gears, torque tubes and hydraulic power drive units, Liebherr-Aerospace has designed a compact, extremely reliable and powerful fold subsystem which fits into a very narrow section of the 777X’s wing. With its motor and rotating actuator, this system folds the wing tip after landing, thus reducing the wingspan of the wide-body aircraft by 7 meters (3.5 meters on each side) from 71.8 meters to 64.8 meters.
When it comes to the development of the actuators, Liebherr-Aerospace can rely on its know-how in hydraulic actuation for primary flight controls.
First folding wing tip system in commercial aviation
The extremely large wingspan is one of the factors defining the Boeing 777X, and this would normally exclude the aircraft from using the same airport gates as the current Boeing 777 model. However, thanks to its special wing tips which can be folded up after landing, the 777X is still in the same wingspan category as the 777. For take-off, the wing tips are unfolded back into the horizontal position, providing the benefit of an extended span to increase fuel efficiency. The folding wing tip system is the first of its kind in commercial aviation.Video: 777X Folding Wing Tip Actuation System
Relying on its unrivalled experience in high-lift systems for long-range commercial aircraft, and especially in gears and hydraulic motors, Liebherr-Aerospace has designed compact, extremely reliable and lightweight components. The hydraulic motor and the power drive unit deliver the mechanical power needed for the aircraft’s leading edge actuators.
Relying on its unrivalled experience in high-lift systems and especially in geared rotary actuators for long-range commercial aircraft, Liebherr-Aerospace not only designs, manufactures and services the leading edge actuators, but the company also produces the trailing edge actuators. The design and development of the Boeing 777X trailing edge geared rotary actuators, which are among the largest one’s ever designed and built for commercial aviation, reside with Boeing. Liebherr-Aerospace on its part supports the design and development both from its Seattle office and its Lindenberg facilities.
In addition, Boeing has selected Liebherr-Aerospace to provide the 777X iron wing test rigs and the mini rigs for secondary flight controls. These test rigs are built at Liebherr-Aerospace’s test center for flight controls in Lindenberg (Germany). The iron wings are installed there, whereas the mini rigs have been delivered to Boeing’s site in Everett, Washington (USA).
Liebherr-Aerospace performs all its design, development, testing and manufacturing activities in Lindenberg, which is home to Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg GmbH, Liebherr’s worldwide center of excellence for flight control systems and landing gears.
For the 777X as well as for the Boeing 777 program, Liebherr delivers two electronic components of the main gear steering system: the main gear steering control unit and the nose gear steering position transducer. This is the first time for Liebherr-Aerospace to supply stand-alone electronics (electronic hardware with a software operation system, as well as application software to integrate into dedicated airplane systems).