Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg GmbH, a subsidiary of the Liebherr Group – one of the biggest construction equipment manufacturers in the world – has reached a new milestone. The company has been selected by Airbus to supply the lower cargo door actuator and valve for the Airbus A350 aircraft. The complex valve will be produced using additive manufacturing.
The Liebherr Group is a German-Swiss multinational equipment manufacturer based in Bulle, Switzerland, with its main production facilities and origins in Germany. The Group’s parent company is Liebherr-International AG, which is entirely owned by members of the Liebherr family and is located in Bulle, Switzerland.
Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg, Liebherr’s center of competence for flight control systems, landing gears, gears, gearboxes as well as electronics, is collaborating intensively with Airbus in the development of additively manufactured components.
At the beginning of 2019, Liebherr-Aerospace started the serial production of 3D printed parts. The company had successfully certified and delivered a printed proximity sensor bracket for the A350 aircraft’s nose landing gear. This bracket was the first-ever-introduced Airbus system part to be qualified for titanium additive manufacturing. Now, Airbus and Liebherr are launching a more complex component – the valve of the lower cargo door actuator system – for the same aircraft.
Liebherr-Aerospace components are on board all Airbus’ commercial aircraft programs, and this contract is another demonstration of the trust between the two companies and their mutual commitment to introducing cutting-edge innovation to the aircraft manufacturing industry.
This is far from Airbus’ first use of AM. Last year, it was reported that Materialise was printing around 100 different part numbers for the Airbus A350 aircraft – totaling approximately 26,000 parts per year across the entire A350 ecosystem. A few months later, AP&C, a GE Additive-owned provider of metal powders based in the Canadian province of Quebec, entered into a partnership with Airbus through which it was agreed that the company would provide titanium powders for metal additive manufacturing applications, to Airbus.