How Landing Gear Systems are Made

Landing gear systems are obviously critical for an aircraft to have. After all, what goes up must inevitably come back down. More than that, however, landing gear goes through tremendous stresses in terms of heat, weight, and friction during landing procedures, and must therefore be designed and manufactured to the highest standards possible. In this blog, we’ll explore the production process for landing gear, from start to finish.

The design of landing gear begins with engineering. This entails a team of engineers and developers, and a list of requirements; the landing gear must be able to support this much weight, can only weigh so many pounds, use this much hydraulic fluid, and so on. Modern design processes involve multiple disciplines, including computer 3D modelling and simulations, physical replicas, and eventually prototyping, with constant redesigning and reiteration throughout.

Once the base design is settled on, the manufacturing process can begin. High-quality raw materials like steel and aluminum are processed through numerous machining, grinding, and drilling processes to form them into the right shape, then go through heat treatments to harden and temper the metal and improve its durability. Computer-driven automation helps immensely throughout this process, removing the possibility of human error. Once the body of the landing gear is shaped and treated, the surface goes through a series of chemical treatments and painting to protect it from heat, corrosion, and other environmental factors.

After manufacturing, the parts go through an exhaustive series of quality checks, which involve high-tech computer instruments measuring and inspecting the components. Laser scanners are used to examine the surface of a landing gear for flaws that could lead to a failure in use, for example. These 3D scanning systems are incredibly precise, and can pick out deviations as small as a single millimeter.

Once the components have passed inspection, assembly comes. The landing gear assembly consists of several sub-assemblies, which are put together first before the entire body of the landing gear is constructed. State-of-the-art assembly lines are used for this process, ensuring a swift and efficient assembly.

Once everything is put together, the landing gear goes through a series of real-world simulations and tests to ensure it is up to specifications, before being sent to the aircraft’s assembly lines for integration into the aircraft’s body.


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