Getting to grips with landing gear

June 28, 2018


MASK Control Systems will soon be working with Field International, on an exciting aerospace project!


We’ll be creating control panels to help engineers remove, replace, and overhaul the landing gear of aircraft.


Field International are a well-respected name in the aerospace industry. Their client list includes such prestigious names as Boeing, Lufthansa, and Rolls Royce.


Designed For Stress




Up close, landing gear looks pretty robust. Huge tyres, thick cables, reinforced metal housings – it’s clearly designed for durability. It has to be. As the point of contact between speeding aircraft and uncompromising ground, landing gear takes one hell of a beating.


Landing gear physics are complicated. Pressurised oleo-pneumatic shock absorbers offset the tremendous forces at work when the wheels hit the tarmac, but also put constant stress on their metal casings. Acceleration and braking work against gravity and uplift every time the plane takes off and lands, and there’s a huge amount of friction to contend with. Not to mention the hundreds of tons of pressure bearing down from the body of the plane. 


All in all, a plane’s landing gear is subject to huge, conflicting forces – which takes a toll on even the most rugged bits of kit out there.



Check, Maintain, Replace





Airline air and ground crews check and maintain landing gear every day. And the work which goes into designing and building landing gear is nothing short of genius. If well cared for, landing gear can last for hundreds of flights.


However, while a good plane can go on for decades, stressed landing gear will almost certainly have to be overhauled – if not replaced entirely – during that lifespan.


This is where we come in.


A Delicate Operation



Field International are currently working on a new set of machines which will help to remove and replace landing gear.


Landing gear removal and overhaul is no mean feat. You’re working with an aircraft which weighs hundreds of tons, but which is also surprisingly delicate. The equipment used therefore needs to be highly specialised – strong enough to move hefty metal behemoths, but with enough finesse to do so without damaging intricate engineering. 


We’re creating control panels for the clever Field International machines which will jack up the aircraft and help with the landing gear work. Our electrical panels will give engineers control over speed, lift, steering, and so on. It’s a proud moment for us to be working on something as important and complex as this, and we’re delighted to be partnering with a name like Field International for the job!


So, next time you’re jetting off somewhere on holiday, spare a thought for your plane’s landing gear – and for the engineers who worked on it!




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