Electro-mechanical flight actuators (EMFAs) are core flight-critical vehicle components. Fly-by-wire or fly-by-light control of EMFAs is performed by flight management systems (flight, mission, propulsion, and integrated controls that manage any combination of specific flight, mission, and propulsion functions). Reported here are novel results in the analysis of EMFAs with permanent-magnet synchronous motors, with particular interest in the application of brushless high-torque density motors which have superior characteristics compared with other state-of-the-art motor technologies. It is shown that due to nonlinearities and bounds, new control algorithms must be developed and implemented to achieve a spectrum of performance and requirements for EMFAs. A number of important issues in control, analysis, model development, integration, and verification are studied. Tracking control algorithms are synthesized, stability studied, and novel analysis results are reported. Advanced computer-aided engineering software tools and emerging simulation-based design environments are used to guarantee high fidelity modeling and analysis within data intensive simulation. Proof-of-concept demonstration testbeds for the design of advanced EMFAs and their components are developed, and EMFA imitator performance thoroughly studied. Verification of the concepts reported are formed and documented. Precise tracking, disturbance attenuation, accuracy, stability, robustness, and excellent acceleration capabilities are reported. A demonstration is performed to substantiate the theoretical analyses to add credence to its applicability as an approach and method that the designer of future EMFAs can use to design a new class of actuators for aircraft flight control surfaces.

Publication Date



Copyright 2002 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE. ISSN:0018-9251 Note: imported from RIT’s Digital Media Library running on DSpace to RIT Scholar Works in February 2014.

Document Type


Department, Program, or Center

Microelectronic Engineering (KGCOE)


RIT – Main Campus