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Eaton unveils world's first commercial 5000-psi hydraulic pump for Airbus A380, world's largest passenger aircraft

JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI ... Eaton Corporation (NYSE: ETN) and Airbus today officially unveiled the world's first 5000-psi commercial aircraft hydraulic pump specifically designed for the world's largest passenger aircraft -- the Airbus A380 -- at a special event here at Eaton's local manufacturing facility.

The application of this new higher-pressure standard for fluid power generation on a commercial aircraft will allow Airbus to achieve significant weight savings by reducing the diameter of the hydraulic fluid lines and the size of the components that operate the aircraft's primary flight control system.

"During this 100th anniversary celebration of the Wright Brothers' successful flight of a heavier-than-air craft on December 17, 1903, it is significant that we are participating in another milestone in aviation history," said Craig Arnold, senior vice president and group executive for Eaton's Fluid Power business. "By elevating the hydraulic system pressure standard for commercial passenger aircraft from 3000-psi to 5000-psi, Eaton and Airbus will be able to reduce aircraft weight, increase reliability and improve operational performance."

"Eaton is a fine example of why Airbus strives to find the very best suppliers for every component of its aircraft," said Allan McArtor, chairman of Airbus North America. "Eaton has been with Airbus since its beginning and the opportunity to work together to introduce the world's largest passenger aircraft utilizing the world's first commercial 5000-psi hydraulic power generation and fluid conveyance system is a tremendous historical achievement for Airbus, Eaton and the industry."

Airbus announced on October 20, 2001 that Eaton won the hydraulic system contract for the A380. The announcement said the contract has a potential value of $200 million over the 20-year life of the contract. Several of the innovative 5,000-psi hydraulic pumps will begin pre-qualification testing this month. Airbus said the first flight of the A380 with the new hydraulic system will be in late 2004 with commercial service to begin in 2006.

Eight Vickers®-brand 5000-psi hydraulic pumps will provide fluid power to the aircraft's primary flight controls, landing gear, nose wheel steering and other aircraft utility systems. These higher-pressure pumps will also be the first commercial units designed to mechanically disengage from the main engine gearbox, preventing any fluid contamination from entering the hydraulic system, and significantly improving operational availability to the service airline.

The total Eaton system includes eight engine-driven hydraulic pumps per aircraft and four 5000-psi AC motor pumps with associated electronic controls and protection systems. In addition, Eaton was selected to provide the hydraulic fluid distribution technology standard for the A380, including the Aeroquip brand Rynglok tube fitting system and hose products. Eaton is also supplying components for the isolation and ground service panel, including Sterer brand solenoid valves and Aeroquip brand quick-disconnect couplings. Eaton will also supply Goodrich with the complete main landing gear dressings for the A380.

Eaton's leadership and experience in 4000-psi to 8000-psi hydraulic fluid power technology spans almost 40 years and has contributed significantly to critical component weight and volume reduction in overall aircraft system design.

Eaton is a global diversified industrial manufacturer with 2002 sales of $7.2 billion that is a leader in fluid power systems; electrical power quality, distribution and control; automotive engine air management and fuel economy; and intelligent truck systems for fuel economy and safety. Eaton has 51,000 employees and sells products in more than 50 countries.

A leading aircraft manufacturer with the most modern and comprehensive product line on the market, Airbus is a global company with design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK, and Spain as well as subsidiaries in the U.S., China and Japan. Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus is a joint EADS Company with BAE SYSTEMS.



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