The global commercial aircraft actuation system market has been experiencing substantial growth in recent years primarily due to growing air travel in developing nations. Of late, the emergence of auto pilot systems is also gaining traction. Autopilots are the best safety aid when flying in the clouds, low visibility, or in congested airspace. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) norms, an autopilot system is a mandate when a single pilot is operating the aircraft. FAA certifies the current technology autopilots at low cost. The integration of digital display systems and technologies, such as the autopilot system and FMS, in the cockpits of the aircraft, relieve the pilots of their workloads and assures availability of essential flight information. To enhance safety, the organization encourages the development and installation of autopilots in the aircraft. As a result, autopilot manufacturers are investing in the creation of new digital smart autopilots that is compatible with a variety of aircraft without additional certifications bearing high costs.
Automation enhances flight operational safety and efficiency, which is especially critical for commercial airlines. It aims to cut down operating costs for greater profits. In 2014, a survey of airline pilots was conducted, which reported that the pilots operating the Boeing 777 military transport spent just seven minutes manually piloting their aircraft during a flight, whereas only half the time was required for those operating Airbus planes.
Tremendous progress in the aviation industry with the development of the More Electric Aircraft (MEA), such as the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, Airbus A380, and Lockheed F35 airplanes was seen in last 15 years. In these aircraft, the pneumatic or hydraulic actuation systems have been replaced by the electric actuators, which make the aircraft lighter in weight and reduce fuel consumption. In addition, Airbus plans to develop 100 passenger electric aircraft during the forecast period. Therefore, thermal challenges of MEA can hinder the market growth.
Based on aircraft type, it is segmented as narrow body aircraft, wide body aircraft and others. Narrow-body aircraft accounted for the largest share in 2016. Although these aircrafts have lesser capacity than the wide-body aircraft, they are larger in number. Some major narrow-body aircraft are Airbus A318, A319, A320, and A321; the Boeing B727s, and B737s. These planes generally fly over short routes, and are, thus suited to cater to budget travelers. As of 2016, there were over 15,000 narrow-body planes, across the globe, which would be replaced by approximately 12,000 such planes by 2035. Concurrently, there has been a rise in the number of low-cost carriers in the recent years, which has propelled the market for narrow-body planes, globally.
In 2016, North America accounted for the largest share in global commercial aircraft actuation system market. A number of the major actuation system OEMs are present in the region, resulting in a high market share of the region. Moreover, it is expected that approximately 10,000 aircraft would be in service in the region by 2035, which would create an opportunity for the major and prominent companies of the region.
The major player operating in the market are Honeywell, Parker Aerospace, UTC Aerospace Systems, Eaton Corporation Plc, Liebherr, Moog, Curtiss Wright, Saab AB, Woodward Inc., and Triumph Group Inc.
Actuation systems form an integral part of a commercial aircraft, and almost every movable part has an actuator; for example, actuators extend and retract landing gears, monitor and control velocity, control engine speed by adjusting levers and flaps. Different sources of energy such as electricity, hydraulic fluid pressure, or pneumatic pressure, which convert energy into motion, are used to operate the actuation systems. The global commercial aircraft actuation system market revenue is forecast to reach USD 874.4 Million in 2023 with a CAGR 5.05% in the forecast period.
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