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Honeywell (HON) Rolls Out Fly-By-Wire System for UAM Market

Zacks Equity Research

Honeywell International Inc. HON recently unveiled a compact "fly-by-wire" system, which is equivalent to the size of a book. Notably, the company has packed the “brains” of an airliner’s flight controls into a “fly-by-wire” computer system — a significant move toward bringing its commercial aircraft fly-by-wire system to the urban air mobility (UAM) market.

The company’s flight control computer offers stability to these automated aircraft designs by adjusting flight surfaces and motors, and controlling electric actuators that ensure a smooth flight trajectory. As a matter of fact, the flight control system improves flight safety apart from removing the requirement of heavy hydraulics, pushrods and control cables.

The flight control system’s architectural features are based on the company’s existing compact fly-by-wire systems for airplanes. Notably, the system attributes a triplex flight control computer architecture that offers multiple backup options and diminishes risk. It also has lockstep processing feature. These will help in catering to the requirements for passenger transportation in highly inhabited urban areas safely.

The company will likely exhibit the new system at the Uber Elevate Summit in Washington, DC on Jun 11 and Jun 12.

This apart, Honeywell is working on developing a series of products for the UAM market, including designing aircrafts capable of vertical take-off and landing. As present, more than 100 companies globally are working on designing cargo and passenger aircraft to meet the requirement for on-demand short distance flight.

Notably, Honeywell has also entered into a deal with Volocopter to develop navigation and automatic landing systems for its vertical takeoff and landing aircraft. Separately, the company will work on developing avionics, navigation, radios, flight control systems and other products for Pipistrel's vertical takeoff and landing aircraft and electric ALICE aircraft of eViation.

Our Take

Strength in the company’s commercial aftermarket and sensing businesses is likely to boost Aerospace revenues. Also, the company believes that solid demand for its warehouse automation, sensing and IoT businesses will aid its Safety and Productivity Solutions’ revenues. Further, strong demand for commercial fire and security products, particularly in India and China is likely to drive the Building Technologies segment. Over the past three months, the company's shares have gained 8% against 1.9% decline recorded by the industry.

Honeywell has progressed with its portfolio transformation strategy, having declared spin-off dividends of shares of Resideo, and completing the divestment of Garrett Motion Inc. Also, in 2018, the company reorganized its operating segments by divesting Transportation Systems business and the Homes and ADI Global Distribution business. In addition, it acquired the German company — Transnorm — in November 2018. These tactical initiatives will help it concentrate on high growth industrial businesses, and thus boost sales growth.

Zacks Rank & Other Key Picks

Honeywell currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Some other top-ranked stocks from the same space are Carlisle Companies Incorporated CSL, Federal Signal Corporation FSS and United Technologies Corporation UTX. While Carlisle sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Federal Signal and United Technologies carry a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Carlisle outpaced estimates thrice in the preceding four quarters, the average earnings surprise being 19.07%.

Federal Signal surpassed estimates in each of the preceding four quarters, the average positive earnings surprise being 21.75%.

United Technologies beat estimates in each of the preceding four quarters, the average earnings surprise being 12.85%.

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