Rockwell Collins next generation avionics help guide successful first flight of Airbus A350 XWB

A comprehensive package of Rockwell Collins’ information management, communication, navigation, electromechanical and avionics data network systems played a key role in the successful first flight of the Airbus A350 XWB. The flight occurred today in Toulouse, France.

“Watching the first flight of the A350 XWB is a gratifying and monumental occasion for our teams in the U.S. and Europe,” said Kent Statler, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Commercial Systems for Rockwell Collins. “This platform is especially important to our company since we’ve been given the opportunity to lead integration activities that introduce a new level of trust between Rockwell Collins and Airbus.”

Rockwell Collins provides the following systems as standard fit for the A350 XWB:

Information Management On-board
This solution is a new airborne hosting platform for flight operations, aircraft maintenance and airline applications. Monitoring all the systems of the aircraft, it assists maintenance crews by providing secure, detailed information and trends on the health of each component. In addition, it hosts data to the electronic flight bag, helping pilots get easy and instant access to flight plans, aircraft manuals and maps.

Communication System
This system ensures the management of voice and data communications of the aircraft, between pilots, flight crew, controllers and the airline company. It represents the consolidation of five separate packages into one, and encompasses full system integration responsibilities. The package includes next-generation capabilities with improved size, weight and power.

Landing and Navigation Systems
Airbus selected the Rockwell Collins Multi-Mode Receiver and Digital Low Range Altimeter, confirming Rockwell Collins’ leadership in flight landing avionics. The Multi-Mode Receiver provides Instrument Landing System and GPS Landing System capabilities and Space Based Augmentation System, as well as the aircraft’s position, velocity and time reference. It implements the latest satellite navigation features and is prepared for future airspace requirements such as Galileo.

The Digital Radio Altimeter provides precise height measurements above terrain during aircraft approach, landing and climb-out phases of flight. This information is provided to the automatic flight control system, instrument system and terrain awareness and warning system. The Rockwell Collins Digital Low Range Altimeter is the first digital radio altimeter for commercial aircraft.

Rockwell Collins is also providing navigation system components consisting of the ADF-900 Automatic Direction Finder, DME-2100 Distance Measuring Equipment and the VOR-900 VHF Omnidirectional Radio receiver.

Trimmable Horizontal Stabilizer Actuator (THSA)
Rockwell Collins brings decades of experience designing, certifying and manufacturing its market-leading THSA to the A350 XWB. The flight-critical control system is built to withstand no-command-motion and load-path failures, and utilizes multiple electric drive motors for redundancy and maximum availability.

Rudder/Brake Pedal Assembly
As a longer term improvement of the A350 XWB aircraft, Airbus selected Rockwell Collins for the rudder/brake pedal assembly, which is part of the pilot control system. This unit leverages industry-leading applications and multiple generations of design experience in fly-by-wire pilot control systems. The rudder/brake pedal unit converts pilot inputs into an electrical signal that commands rudder movement, and it also controls the A350 XWB’s main wheel braking system.

Avionics Data Network
This secure AFDX network represents the backbone of flight avionics data communications. It connects all the aircraft systems and applications. Rockwell Collins is the exclusive supplier of this critical data network on the Airbus A350 XWB, A380 and A400M. Rockwell Collins is also providing navigation system components including the Automatic Direction Finder (ADF-900), Distance Measuring Equipment (DME-2100) and the VHF Omnidirectional Radio receiver (VOR-900).

The A350 XWB (Xtra Wide-Body) is an all-new mid-size long range product line seating between 270 and 350 passengers in typical three-class layouts.

Source / Author: Rockwell Collins