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Technical Paper

From Airframer Requirements to Detailed Technical Specification of Electromechanical Actuators Aided by Knowledge-Based Methods

Recent trends towards lighter and more efficient commercial aircraft have motivated airframers to consider the use of electromechanical actuators EMA as the primary means of power for aircraft flight control systems. The transition from state-of-the-art hydraulic actuation to new electromechanical technologies poses a great challenge to both airframers and system suppliers for the correct and complete definition of new requirements. Transient effects such as electric motor overheating and inertial loads, previously not present or irrelevant for hydraulic actuators, now have to be taken into account. A knowledge-based environment containing design drivers for electromechanical components is combined with a validation method in order to aid the systems engineer to accomplish such task. This approach offers the potential to guarantee that all requirements are covered by a new technology, and that they are complete and consistent.