By Flap And/or Spoiler Patents (Class 244/213)
  • Patent number: 11117648
    Abstract: A linkage mechanism for a flaperon includes a support structure linkage, a droop panel linkage, and a flaperon linkage. The support structure linkage is pivotally attached to a support structure of a wing of an aircraft. The droop panel linkage is pivotally attached a droop panel. The flaperon linkage is pivotally attached to a flaperon. A second end of the droop panel linkage and a second end of the flaperon linkage are pivotally attached to a connecting section of the support structure linkage. The connecting section is spaced apart from the pivot end of the support structure linkage such that the linkage mechanism transfers a pivoting motion from the flaperon into a pivoting motion of the droop panel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2019
    Date of Patent: September 14, 2021
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS GmbH
    Inventors: Marc Hencke, Markus Gibbert, Florian Gehle
  • Patent number: 11072416
    Abstract: Aircraft nacelles having adjustable chines are described. An example apparatus includes a multi-segment chine coupled to a nacelle. The multi-segment chine includes a first segment and a second segment. The first segment is oriented along a fore-aft direction. The first segment is translatable relative to the nacelle along the fore-aft direction. The first segment includes one or more first airflow openings. The second segment is fixedly coupled to the nacelle. The second segment is oriented along the fore-aft direction. The second segment includes one or more second airflow openings. The second segment is substantially coplanar with the first segment. Translation of the first segment adjusts the transverse alignment of the first airflow openings with the second airflow openings to vary an allowable airflow through the multi-segment chine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2019
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2021
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Daniel Joseph Goering, Adam M. Clark, Connie Phung, Miles Anthony Robinson, Paul M. Vijgen
  • Patent number: 11066149
    Abstract: Airflow-dependent deployable fences for aircraft wings are described. An example apparatus includes a fence coupled to a wing of an aircraft. The fence is movable relative to the wing between a stowed position in which a panel of the fence extends along a skin of the wing, and a deployed position in which the panel extends at an upward angle away from the skin. The panel is configured to impede a spanwise airflow along the wing when the fence is in the deployed position. The fence is configured to move from the deployed position to the stowed position in response to an aerodynamic force exerted on the panel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2021
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Brian Tillotson, Chris Kettering
  • Patent number: 11053983
    Abstract: Example torque tube assemblies may be used with aircraft high lift devices. An example torque tube assembly includes a torque tube having a first end and a second end opposite the first end. A first fitting is coupled to the first end and a second fitting is coupled to the second end. The first fitting is to be coupled to a first high lift device of an aircraft. The second fitting has a spline section. The torque tube assembly also includes a sliding spline shaft having a channel and a first yoke. The second fitting is slidably received within the channel. The torque tube assembly further includes a spline coupling having a second yoke, which is coupled to the first yoke of the sliding spline shaft to form a U-joint. The spline coupling is to be coupled to a second high lift device of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 6, 2021
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Mark R. Meyer, Tyler S. Gregson
  • Patent number: 11034447
    Abstract: Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) tethered wing recovery is disclosed. An example apparatus includes a detachable portion of a wing that is couplable to a fixed portion of the wing, a lock configured to fasten the detachable portion to the fixed portion, where the lock is to disengage the detachable portion from the fixed portion upon contact of the wing with a recovery device, and a tether configured to extend between the detachable and fixed portions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 15, 2021
    Assignee: Insitu, Inc
    Inventor: Matthew David Grubb
  • Patent number: 11034435
    Abstract: A wing for an aircraft including a slat, and a connection assembly for movably connecting the slat to the main wing. The connection assembly includes a first connection element movably mounted to the main wing and mounted to the slat, and a second connection element movably mounted to the main wing and mounted to the slat. The connection assembly includes a drive unit connected to the slat that includes a first and second drive station spaced apart in the wing span direction. The first drive station has a first input section, a first gear unit and a first output section connected to the slat. The second drive station has a second input section connected to the drive shaft, a second gear unit, and a second output section connected to the slat. The drive unit includes a sync shaft coupling the first output section to the second output section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 15, 2021
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Bernhard Schlipf, Dort Daandels
  • Patent number: 11027824
    Abstract: Distributed trailing edge wing flap systems are described. An example wing flap system for an aircraft includes a flap and first and second actuators. The flap is movable between a deployed position and a retracted position relative to a fixed trailing edge of a wing of the aircraft. The first and second actuators are configured to move the flap relative to the fixed trailing edge. The first actuator is operatively coupled to the second actuator via a shaft. The first actuator is actuatable via pressurized hydraulic fluid to be supplied from a hydraulic system of the aircraft to the first actuator via a hydraulic module operatively coupled to the first actuator. The first actuator is configured to control movement of the second actuator via the shaft when the hydraulic system and the hydraulic module are functional. The second actuator is actuatable via an electric motor of the second actuator. The electric motor is selectively connectable to an electrical system of the aircraft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 8, 2021
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventor: Neal V. Huynh
  • Patent number: 11014649
    Abstract: Systems and methods for deploying adjacent trailing edge flaps that are part of different flap assemblies of different stiffnesses are disclosed. An exemplary method comprises: deploying a first flap of a first flap assembly having a first stiffness by a first deployment amount and deploying a second flap adjacent the first flap by a second deployment amount where the deployment amount of the first flap part of the flap assembly of lower stiffness is greater than the second deployment amount of the second flap part of the flap assembly of higher stiffness. The difference in deployment amounts may be adapted to improve continuity between the first flap and the second flap when the first and second flaps are deployed and subjected to an aerodynamic load.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2021
    Assignee: BOMBARDIER INC.
    Inventors: Iyad Akel, Dmitry Budnitsky, Howard Ian Smith, Thomas Hanson
  • Patent number: 10946949
    Abstract: An under-wing flap support mounting structure incorporates a clevis on a forward end of an underwing beam. A spherical bearing support assembly carrying a spherical bearing is mounted to a fixed wing structure proximate a lower wing skin. A joint coupling has a lug pivotally coupled to the clevis and a longitudinal pin extending from the lug. The longitudinal pin is slidably received in the spherical bearing. The lug has a bore in which a fuse pin is disposed to secure the lug to the clevis and inhibit the lug from pivoting relative to the clevis. A force applied to an aft portion of the underwing beam that is sufficient to urge separation from the wing causes the clevis to apply a shear force to shear the fuse pin and enable the lug to pivot and cause the longitudinal pin to slide out of the spherical bearing. The underwing flap support separates from the wing without resulting damage to the underside of the wing structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 11, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2021
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Kevin R. Tsai, Mark D. Gerber
  • Patent number: 10926867
    Abstract: Distributed trailing edge wing flap systems are described. An example wing flap system for an aircraft includes a flap and first and second actuators. The flap is movable between a deployed position and a retracted position relative to a fixed trailing edge of a wing of the aircraft. The first and second actuators are configured to move the flap relative to the fixed trailing edge. The first actuator is actuatable via pressurized hydraulic fluid to be supplied from a hydraulic system of the aircraft to the first actuator via a hydraulic module operatively coupled to the first actuator. The first actuator is operatively coupled to a first shaft. The second actuator is actuatable via an electric motor of the second actuator. The electric motor is operatively coupled to an electrical system of the aircraft. The second actuator is operatively coupled to a second shaft. The first and second shafts are selectively operatively couplable via a clutch operatively positioned between the first and second shafts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 10, 2018
    Date of Patent: February 23, 2021
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventor: Neal V. Huynh
  • Patent number: 10919616
    Abstract: Guidance assembly for guiding a movement of an airfoil leading edge high-lift device carrier track between a retracted position and an extended position, comprising at least one lower guide element contacting a lower surface of said carrier track and/or at least one upper guide element contacting an upper surface of said carrier track, wherein at least one of said lower or upper guide elements includes a sliding surface arranged to be in sliding contact with said high-lift device carrier track during movement of said carrier track.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2021
    Assignee: ASCO INDUSTRIES NV
    Inventors: Antoon Marcel Vervliet, Ivo Peter Marie Paulus, Alexander Jean M. Verhuizen, Stein Janssens
  • Patent number: 10906631
    Abstract: A lifting surface comprising a movable discontinuity located in the surface of the lifting surface. The movable discontinuity is movable between an active position in which the movable discontinuity acts as vortex generator, and a passive position in which the movable discontinuity is integrated into the surface of the lifting surface without acting as vortex generator. The lifting surface may be in an elevator, the elevator being rotatable around a hinge line with respect to the rest of the lifting surface. A bar is rigidly joined to the elevator. The bar, the elevator and the movable discontinuity are configured such that when the elevator rotates with respect to the rest of the lifting surface, the bar moves the movable discontinuity that departs from the surface of the lifting surface, acting as a vortex generator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 2018
    Date of Patent: February 2, 2021
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS S.L.
    Inventors: Carlos García Nieto, Iker Vélez De Mendizábal Alonso, Soledad Crespo Peña, Enrique Guinaldo Fernández, Jesús Javier Vázquez Castro, Álvaro Torres Salas
  • Patent number: 10882604
    Abstract: Distributed trailing edge wing flap systems are described. An example wing flap system for an aircraft includes a flap and an actuator. The flap is movable between a deployed position and a retracted position relative to a fixed trailing edge of a wing of the aircraft. The actuator is to move the flap relative to the fixed trailing edge. The actuator is hydraulically drivable via first pressurized hydraulic fluid to be supplied by a hydraulic system of the aircraft. The actuator is also hydraulically drivable via second pressurized hydraulic fluid to be supplied by a local power unit. The local power unit is selectively connectable to an electrical system of the aircraft. The electrical system is to power the local power unit to supply the second pressurized hydraulic fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 5, 2021
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventor: Neal V. Huynh
  • Patent number: 10829203
    Abstract: Distributed trailing edge wing flap systems are described. An example wing flap system for an aircraft includes a flap, a first actuator, a second actuator, and a shaft. The flap is movable between a deployed position and a retracted position relative to a fixed trailing edge of a wing of the aircraft. The first actuator is to move the flap relative to the fixed trailing edge. The first actuator is actuatable via pressurized hydraulic fluid to be supplied from a hydraulic system of the aircraft to the first actuator via a hydraulic module operatively coupled to the first actuator. The second actuator is to move the flap relative to the fixed trailing edge. The second actuator is actuatable via an electric motor of the second actuator connected to a first electrical system of the aircraft. The shaft operatively couples the first actuator to the second actuator. The first and second actuators are actuatable via the shaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2018
    Date of Patent: November 10, 2020
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventor: Neal V. Huynh
  • Patent number: 10810894
    Abstract: An aircraft defining an upright orientation and an inverted orientation, a ground station; and a control system for remotely controlling the flight of the aircraft. The ground station has an auto-land function that causes the aircraft to invert, stall, and controllably land in the inverted orientation to protect a payload and a rudder extending down from the aircraft. In the upright orientation, the ground station depicts the view from a first aircraft camera. When switching to the inverted orientation: (1) the ground station depicts the view from a second aircraft camera, (2) the aircraft switches the colors of red and green wing lights, extends the ailerons to act as inverted flaps, and (3) the control system adapts a ground station controller for the inverted orientation. The aircraft landing gear is an expanded polypropylene pad located above the wing when the aircraft is in the upright orientation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 11, 2019
    Date of Patent: October 20, 2020
    Assignee: AeroVironment, Inc.
    Inventors: Christopher E. Fisher, Thomas Robert Szarek, Justin B. McAllister, Pavel Belik
  • Patent number: 10647445
    Abstract: A remote optical control surface indication system comprising mechanisms configured to engage heads of respective fasteners that attach an alignment indexing plate to a vehicular structure having a control surface coupled thereto. The system further comprises: a camera having a field of view that encompasses a portion of an end face of the control surface when the mechanisms are engaged with the fasteners and when the control surface is in a neutral position; a source of light that is activatable to project light that illuminates the end face of the control surface; a display screen comprising an array of pixels; and a computing system configured to process image data captured by the camera to determine a current position of a centerline of the end face of the control surface relative to a baseline position and control the display screen to display symbology indicating the current position relative to the baseline position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2019
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2020
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: David M. Konyndyk, Jerry A. James
  • Patent number: 10633077
    Abstract: An aircraft includes a structure exhibiting a median plane XZ and including a fuselage, a fixed vertical stabilizer at the rear of the fuselage, an adjustable horizontal stabilizer rotatably mounted about a horizontal axis on a first section of the structure, and extending on either side of the median plane XZ, and at the rear, two elevators mounted rotatably about a horizontal axis on a second section of the structure on either side of the median plane XZ independently of the adjustable horizontal stabilizer. In an aircraft of this kind, the elevators no longer have any impact on the adjustable horizontal stabilizer, which allows, among other things, the dimensions of the adjustable horizontal stabilizer, and also of the actuator operating them, to be reduced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2020
    Assignee: Airbus Operations S.A.S.
    Inventor: Frédéric Sauvinet
  • Patent number: 10501166
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus to control a gap between movable aircraft wing components are disclosed. An example apparatus includes spoiler including a first panel and a second panel, a flexible tip extending from an intersection of the first and second panels; and a rub block coupled to a surface of the second panel, the rub block positioned to engage a flap to maintain a distance between the spoiler and the flap and to enable the flexible tip to perform deform to change aerodynamic properties of the spoiler.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2017
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2019
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Michael A. Balzer, Jan A. Kordel
  • Patent number: 10480653
    Abstract: A seal is disclosed for a wing for providing an aerodynamic seal between a fixed aerofoil and a movable control surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 19, 2019
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS LIMITED
    Inventor: Paul Blades
  • Patent number: 10472046
    Abstract: An internal wing control surface linkage system comprising: an actuator arm configured to rotate around a first rotation axis within an airfoil body. A linking arm is mounted within the airfoil body. The linking arm comprises a linking tube and a linkage rod slideably received within the linking tube. The linking tube comprises a hinged end pivotally coupled to the actuator arm about a first pivot axis parallel to the first rotation axis to cause deflection of a control surface coupled to the airfoil body during rotation of the actuator arm. The linkage rod comprising a hinged end coupled to a clevis about a second pivot axis of the control surface. A spherical bearing swivelly coupling the linking arm and providing a fixed swivel pivot which swivels the linking arm, as the linking tube simultaneously slides within the spherical bearing and, in combination, the rod simultaneously slides within the linking tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 12, 2019
    Assignee: LOCKHEED MARTIN CORPORATION
    Inventors: Steven J. Ellzey, James C. Copp
  • Patent number: 10464659
    Abstract: A vertical stabilizer for an aircraft, including a fin, pivotable rudder, rudder adjustment arrangement, and vortex generator arrangement having on each side of the fin a turbulence generation element, each turbulence generation element disposed in a surface section of the fin and mounted moveably between a first, retracted position, where it is retracted into an interior space of the fin, and a second, extended position, where it projects at least partially outwardly from the fin transversely with respect to the surface section, and a turbulence generation element adjustment arrangement which is coupled to the rudder. The turbulence generation element adjustment arrangement engages the turbulence generation elements to move them. In a range of angular positions of the rudder, the turbulence generation element adjustment arrangement is inoperative for causing a movement of the turbulence generation elements out of the first position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 4, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2019
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Memis Tiryaki, Matthias Hegenbart, Wolfgang Eilken, Michael Sauer
  • Patent number: 10423168
    Abstract: Methods are provided for operating an air vehicle, the air vehicle including fixed wings configured to provide mild stall characteristics including a post-stall regime, and a propulsion system capable of generating a controllable thrust, the thrust being variable at least between an idle thrust and a maximum thrust. During a landing maneuver, the air vehicle is caused to attain an angle of attack corresponding to said post-stall regime, and during the landing maneuver, there is concurrently generated a thrust level of said thrust greater than said idle thrust to provide a thrust vector having a thrust lift force component at landing. Corresponding control systems are also provided, and air vehicles including such control systems are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignee: ISRAEL AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES LTD.
    Inventors: Michael Shepshelovich, Danny Abramov
  • Patent number: 10315753
    Abstract: A system and method for controlling one or more flaps of a wing of an aircraft include a first flap moveably secured to a first wing of the aircraft. The first flap is moveable between an extended position and a retracted position. First and second actuators are coupled to the first flap. A flap control unit is in communication with the first and second actuators. The flap control unit is configured to operate the first and second actuators to move the first flap between retracted and extended positions, monitor a first electrical signal provided to the first actuator, monitor a second electrical signal provided to the second actuator, and determine that the first and second actuators are synchronized by monitoring the first and second electrical signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 11, 2019
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Patrick McCormick, James L. Peck
  • Patent number: 10279894
    Abstract: A vortex generator arrangement for an aircraft comprising a surface section forming a flow surface interacting with a flow surrounding the aircraft in operation, wherein the surface section comprises an opening, a vortex generator movable between a retracted position and an extended position, a retainer for holding the vortex generator in the retracted position, a biasing structure for biasing the vortex generator towards the extended position and a release for releasing the vortex generator from the retainer such that the vortex generator can be moved towards the extended position. Further, a sealing membrane is provided completely sealing the opening when the vortex generator is in the retracted position. The vortex generator is movable through the membrane from the retracted position to the extended position. Furthermore, a flow control system, an aircraft and a method of controlling flow are described and claimed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2019
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Bruno Stefes, Wolfgang Eilken, Erich Paul
  • Patent number: 10274968
    Abstract: A device including an acquisition module for acquiring current parameters of the aircraft, a computational module for computing a current load factor of the aircraft, a computational module for computing a minimum load factor, a computational module for computing the difference between the current load factor and the minimum load factor, and an acoustic emission module for emitting a sound signal, the level of which increases gradually as a function of time when the difference between the current load factor and the minimum load factor is less than zero.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS SAS
    Inventors: Jerome Bazile, Matthias Eberle
  • Patent number: 10215157
    Abstract: A method is provided for operation of a wind turbine having rotor blades attached to a hub, wherein a controller compensates for torsionally induced blade twist. The method includes operating the wind turbine according to a rated power output curve and maximum design thrust value, and periodically or continuously detecting for induced torsional twist in the rotor blades. Upon determination of torsional twist being induced in the rotor blades, the method includes adjusting the maximum thrust value in the control program to compensate for the induced twist. The wind turbine controller then controls pitch of the rotor blades as a function of the increased maximum thrust value so that power output of the wind turbine is not unnecessarily limited or increased by the induced twist on the rotor blades.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 4, 2017
    Date of Patent: February 26, 2019
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Thomas Franklin Perley, Thomas Frank Fric, Arne Koerber
  • Patent number: 10202187
    Abstract: A vortex generator arrangement for an aircraft including a surface section, a flap element pivotable between a first position and a second position, a biasing arrangement biasing the flap element towards the second position, retaining devices retaining the flap element in the first or second position, and a release device releasing the flap element from the first retaining device. The biasing arrangement, the first retaining device and the second retaining device are configured such that the second retaining device automatically retains the flap element in the second position after the flap element has been pivoted by the biasing arrangement from the first position into the second position. As soon as the torque exceeds a predetermined value, the second retaining device automatically releases the flap element, which pivots against the force of the biasing arrangement into the first position and is automatically retained therein by the first retaining device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 4, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 12, 2019
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Matthias Hegenbart, Wolfgang Eilken, Erich Paul, Bruno Stefes, Lena Duken
  • Patent number: 10193349
    Abstract: Provided is a power system 1 including a central distributor 3, to which power is supplied from a power generator 2 of an aircraft 100, and a distal distributor 5. The distal distributor 5 is away from the central distributor 3 in the aircraft 100, so that the distal distributor 5 receives a power supply from the central distributor 3, the distal distributor 5 distributing the supplied power to electric actuators 15 and a wing illuminator 18.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2019
    Assignee: NABTESCO CORPORATION
    Inventor: Tsutomu Yasui
  • Patent number: 10144502
    Abstract: Aerodynamic structures having lower surface spoilers are described herein. One disclosed example apparatus includes a first spoiler of an aerodynamic structure of an aircraft, where the first spoiler is to deflect away from a first side of the aerodynamic structure and a second spoiler on a second side of the aerodynamic structure opposite of the first side, where the second spoiler is to deflect away from the second side to reduce a load on at least one of the first spoiler or a flap of the aerodynamic structure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 9, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 4, 2018
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Sean C. Omeara, Brian E. Geppert, Christopher Andrew Konings, Stephen Roger Amorosi, Paul M. Vijgen, Kevin Mark Johnsen, Gregory M. Santini
  • Patent number: 10133272
    Abstract: Example methods and apparatus to deploy and recover a fixed wing unmanned aerial vehicle via a non-fixed wing aircraft are described herein. An example method includes tracking a location of a non-fixed wing aircraft in flight, tracking a location of a fixed wing aircraft in flight, positioning the non-fixed wing aircraft relative to the fixed wing aircraft based on the locations of the non-fixed wing aircraft and the fixed wing aircraft and coupling, via a gripper, the fixed wing aircraft to the non-fixed wing aircraft in mid-flight at a recovery location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 7, 2015
    Date of Patent: November 20, 2018
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventor: Darcy Davidson
  • Patent number: 10081419
    Abstract: A system for monitoring asymmetry between two components includes a comparator having a first input to receive a signal indicative of a position of a first component and a second input to receive a signal indicative of a position of a second component. The system also includes means for performing an integration of a plurality of output signals from the comparator indicative of the difference exceeding the threshold and means for outputting a command signal to actuate a brake in response to the integrating means determining that the number of times the difference exceeds the threshold is in excess of a given value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: GOODRICH ACTUATION SYSTEMS LIMITED
    Inventors: Tony Jones, Peter William Bacon
  • Patent number: 10040540
    Abstract: A link for coupling an aircraft lift device to a track that is deployable about an axis of rotation. The link includes a track member to be fixed relative to the track, a lift device member to be fixed relative to the lift device, and an intermediate member that couples the track member to the lift device member. The link is configured to allow for sliding movement of the lift device member relative to the track member such that the lift device is slidable along a linear path relative to the track in a direction of the axis of rotation of the track.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2018
    Assignee: Airbus Operations Limited
    Inventor: Ben Bishop
  • Patent number: 9994304
    Abstract: A hydraulic actuator is adapted to drive a spoiler of a wing having a flap. When the hydraulic actuator drives the spoiler in an overlapping region where a driving range of the flap and a driving range of the spoiler overlap, an output suppressing structure suppress a drive output of the hydraulic actuator in the overlapping region to be less than that in a non-overlapping region other than the overlapping region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 1, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2018
    Assignee: NABTESCO CORPORATION
    Inventor: Koji Ito
  • Patent number: 9923349
    Abstract: An assembly for guiding a cable between a structural part of an aircraft and a movable aerodynamic body includes a chain of pivotally connected links, a first coil device arranged between each pair of the links for guiding the cable between two angular positions, and a second coil device arranged at the first end of the chain for passing the cable from the chain to the aerodynamic body. The support of the assembly is statically determinate through the use of a bracket pivotally connected to one of the links at the structural part, which bracket does not permit a translative motion relative to the structural part. This is further supported by a bearing located at one of the links which is connected to the second coil device, which bearing permits angular rotation at least in two orthogonal directions, but no translative motion relative to the aerodynamic body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 20, 2018
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Bernhard Schlipf, Johanna Pyrczek, Michael Roters
  • Patent number: 9897078
    Abstract: Rotary actuator assemblies, wind tunnels including the same, and associated methods are disclosed. A rotary actuator assembly includes a rotary element and a rotary actuator with a shape memory alloy element. The rotary actuator is configured to generate a first torque and a second torque in opposing rotary directions to rotate the rotary element. A rotary actuator assembly further includes an assist magnetic element and a receiver magnetic element configured to generate a magnetic force therebetween. Wind tunnels include an aerodynamic model with a rotary actuator assembly to rotate a portion of the aerodynamic model with respect to an airstream in a chamber. A method of rotating a rotary element includes modulating a temperature of a shape memory alloy element and applying a supplemental torque to the rotary element with an assist magnetic element and a receiver magnetic element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2018
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Douglas E. Nicholson, Micheal Bass, James Henry Mabe
  • Patent number: 9868512
    Abstract: An airplane wing comprises a main wing and a flap system that has a flap at the trailing edge of the main wing. An elongate flap track member is connected to the main wing in such a manner that it can be moved substantially in its longitudinal direction and is guided by supporting bearing elements relative to the main wing between a forward retracted position and a rearward extended position. The flap is rotatably connected to the rear end of the flap track member in such a manner that it can rotate about a rotation axis that extends substantially parallel to the trailing edge of the main wing, so that the flap moves together with the flap track member when the flap track member is moved and so that the flap can be rotated about the rotation axis mechanically independently of the movement of the flap track member. The flap system comprises an actuator system having two actuators.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2018
    Assignee: FOKKER AEROSTRUCTURES B.V.
    Inventors: Adrianus Marinus Franciscus Bastiaansen, Michel Schoonhoven
  • Patent number: 9815547
    Abstract: A flap system for an aircraft includes a flow body, a trailing flap and a movement means. The flow body includes an upper surface and a lower surface, the lower surface having a recess. The movement means is attachable to the flow body and the trailing flap. The trailing flap includes a shape that corresponds to the recess in the lower surface. The movement means is adapted for conducting at least a chordwise movement of the trailing flap such that it is movable out of and into the recess of the flow body in absence of a gap between the leading edge of the trailing flap and the flow body. Thereby, a clear increase in a lift coefficient may be achieved, while at the same time maintaining a low complexity and a high reliability of the flap system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 14, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Efstratios Saliveros, Hendrik Friedel
  • Patent number: 9809326
    Abstract: A method for adjusting play in a high-lift system of an aircraft with several flaps, moved by a drive unit with the aid of driving stations connected to a driveshaft, includes disengaging the mechanical connections between the driveshaft and the driving stations in the first position, displacing the individual drive levers by mechanically driving a gear input of the associated rotary actuator such that the individual drive levers come into mechanical contact with a stop in a second position, spaced apart from the first position, and are pretensioned by a certain torque, rotationally fixing the gear inputs of the rotary actuators, adapting the length of connecting links between the respective drive levers and a support arm carrying the associated flap such that a position of the associated flap corresponding to the position of the stop is reached, and reconnecting the driving stations to the driveshaft pretensioned to have no play.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 28, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 7, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventor: Jan Haserodt
  • Patent number: 9776705
    Abstract: A shape memory structure includes a plurality of bases directly attached to a composite structure and arranged along a first line at a first edge of the composite structure. A plurality of buckle-shaped shape memory structures are attached to corresponding ones of the plurality of bases, such that first ends of the plurality of buckle-shaped shape memory structures are raised relative to the composite structure. Second ends of the plurality of buckle-shaped shape memory structures are directly attached to the composite structure along a second line at a second edge of the composite structure, the second edge being opposite the first edge. When activated, the shape memory structure changes from a buckled shape to an original shape to cause the composite structure to assume a deployed shape; when deactivated, the shape memory structure to resumes a buckled shape and the composite structure an undeployed shape.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 3, 2017
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Matthew Anthony Dilligan, Frederick T. Calkins, Tyler Jacob Zimmerman, James Henry Mabe, Kay Y. Blohowiak
  • Patent number: 9771144
    Abstract: A high lift system for an aircraft, comprises a drive unit, a high lift surface, at least one primary drive station, each primary drive station having a shaft connection couplable with the drive unit and a primary lever couplable with the high lift surface. The high lift system further comprises at least one secondary unit, each secondary unit having a secondary lever couplable with the high lift surface. Each one of the at least one primary drive station is adapted for moving the respective primary lever on driving the shaft connection, and each one of the at least one secondary unit comprises a selectively activatable brake, such that the secondary lever follows the motion of the one of the at least one high lift surface when the brake is deactivated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 22, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 26, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventor: Saskia Dege
  • Patent number: 9764825
    Abstract: An active winglet includes a body portion substantially parallel to a wing of an aircraft, as if it were an extension of the wing. The body portion is attachable to an aircraft wing and includes a controllable airflow modification device coupled thereto. By virtue of having a controllable airflow modification device, the winglet is capable of adjusting a control surface of the controllable airflow modification device in response to in-flight conditions, to reduce wing loads, increase range, and/or increase efficiency.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 19, 2017
    Assignee: Tamarack Aerospace Group, Inc.
    Inventor: Nicholas R. Guida
  • Patent number: 9688418
    Abstract: A method for determining a state of a component in a high lift system of an aircraft is proposed, the high lift system comprising a central power control unit for providing rotational power by means of a transmission shaft; and drive stations coupled with the power control unit and movable high lift surfaces.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 22, 2015
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS GMBH
    Inventors: Eugen Neb, Jan-Arend Van Bruggen, Michael Brady, Joerg Wyrembek, Olivier Criou, Jan Haserodt, Mark Heintjes
  • Patent number: 9688385
    Abstract: A trailing-edge flap system for a wing of an aircraft comprises a trailing-edge flap, a guide rail attached to the trailing-edge flap, a carriage slidably engaging the guide rail and rotatably attachable to a fixed position on the wing structure, and a drive means coupled the wing structure to a first joint on the guide rail. The drive means is configured to move the trailing-edge flap relative to the wing structure by moving the guide rail along the carriage by moving the first joint relative to the wing structure, such that the trailing-edge flap translates and rotates. The trailing-edge flap is at least movable into a cruise position, a high-lift position and an air brake position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 27, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Atra Surya Gemilang, Wolfgang Voege
  • Patent number: 9573673
    Abstract: A slat support and deployment apparatus comprising a master slat support and deployment assembly and a slave slat support and deployment assembly is disclosed. The master and the slave slat support and deployment assembly each include an arm having a free end attachable to the same slat at spaced locations along its length for deployment and retraction of said slat in a direction generally parallel to a wing in response to simultaneous movement of said arms. The master and the slave slat support assemblies each include a coupling for attaching said free end of each arm to a slat and the coupling that couples the free end of the arm of each slat support and deployment assembly to a slat is configured to allow movement of that slat relative to said free end of said arm of each slat support and deployment assembly during deployment and retraction of said slat.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2017
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS LIMITED
    Inventors: Simon John Parker, Eric Peter Wildman, Michael John Sykes
  • Patent number: 9482335
    Abstract: A device and method for determining whether a no-back device is functioning properly includes a no-back device coupling an input shaft and an output shaft. A no-back output gear is coupled to the output shaft, and a reaction gear is operably coupled to the no-back output gear. A check device includes a rotatable drive feature having a first end accessible for rotation and a second end engaged with the reaction gear. The functionality of the no-back device is evaluated by applying a rotational torque to the drive feature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 7, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 1, 2016
    Assignee: HAMILTON SUNDSTRAND CORPORATION
    Inventor: James M. Regan
  • Patent number: 9463869
    Abstract: A wing includes a trailing edge, and a divergent trailing edge device slideable along an aft surface of the trailing edge between a stowed position and a fully deployed position. The trailing edge device is located entirely within the trailing edge when stowed, and it increases lift over drag of the wing when deployed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 11, 2016
    Assignee: The Boeing Company
    Inventors: Flint M. Jamison, Stephen R. Amorosi, Michael K. Klein
  • Patent number: 9434469
    Abstract: A drive system for driving control surfaces of an aircraft includes at least one drive unit, at least one main shaft connectable to the at least one drive unit and at least two adjusting units for each control surface to be driven. Each adjusting unit includes a differential, two rotary actuators and an adjustment lever. The differential has at least one input means and two output means and is adapted to transfer torque from the at least one input means to the two output means. The input means is connectable to the main shaft, the two rotary actuators each have a rotation input means and a motion output means. The rotation input means is connectable to one of the output means of the differential each and the adjustment lever is connected to the motion output means of both rotary actuators.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 8, 2013
    Date of Patent: September 6, 2016
    Assignees: Airbus Operations GmbH, Technische Universitaet Hamburg-Harburg
    Inventors: Tanno Zantz, David Arriola, Stefan Benischke, Frank Thielecke
  • Patent number: 9428229
    Abstract: Air guiding device (12) of a motor vehicle has an air guiding element (13) extending in the region of a forward structure part (11) of the motor vehicle completely or partially over the width thereof. An actuating element (16) can displace the air guiding element (13) between an extended operating position in which the air guiding element (13) has an aerodynamic air guiding effect, and a retracted inoperative position in which the air guiding element (13) has substantially no aerodynamic air guiding effect. The air guiding element (13) is formed at least in certain portions from an elastically deformable sheet-like element (15) whose outer contour can be brought into shape in such a way that the sheet-like element (15) ensures laminar flow guidance.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2016
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Steffen Hoelzel, Florian Scheerer
  • Patent number: 9376203
    Abstract: A device for mechanically connecting a control surface to a fixed structural element of an aircraft, including a rotary actuator for driving an element that is securely connected to the control surface in rotation in relation to an element securely connected to the fixed structural element, around an articulation axis, as well as articulation elements for articulating this control surface around this axis. These articulation elements are able to support the control surface independently of the rotary actuator. This arrangement permits taking benefit from the advantageous properties of rotary actuators while allowing removal of the rotary actuator without having first to remove the control surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 28, 2016
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS SAS
    Inventors: Pierre Tieys, Alain Sagansan, Laurent Andrieu
  • Patent number: 9061755
    Abstract: An aircraft wing assembly, comprising a wing having a fixed leading edge, a slat mounted upon a slat deployment mechanism for moving the slat between a retracted position and an extended position with respect to the fixed leading edge, the fixed leading edge having an aperture to accommodate the slat deployment mechanism, and a closing plate mounted off the slat deployment mechanism for closing a gap between a lower trailing edge of the slat and a lower edge of the aperture when the slat is retracted. The closing plate can include a first portion and a second portion, and a hinge connecting the first and the second portions. The closing plate can include a plurality of integrally formed spacer elements for positioning the closing plate with respect to the slat deployment mechanism. Also, a method of removing an access panel in an aircraft wing assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 23, 2015
    Assignee: AIRBUS OPERATIONS LIMITED
    Inventors: James Wilson, Paul Hadley, John Gleave