Our History

For nearly a century, Honeywell and its legacy companies—Sperry, Bendix, Garrett, AiResearch, Pioneer, Lycoming, Grimes, King and AlliedSignal— have been at the forefront of both military and civilian aviation history.

10/18/2013

The first autopilot in 1914, Charles Lindbergh’s first successful solo flight across the Atlantic in 1927, Amelia Earhart’s landmark flight in 1932, and the world’s first sonic boom in 1947, were all made possible because of aviation technology developed by Honeywell and its legacy companies.

During World War II, the groundbreaking cabin pressurization system developed by Garrett, Honeywell’s integrated C-1 autopilot, and the Norden bombsight made high-altitude bombing first feasible. Sperry instruments and navigation gear, Bendix electronics, carburetors, wheels, and brakes, and Grimes lighting systems were widely used on World War II aircraft. These innovations were later implemented successfully in civilian aircraft, helping the post-war boom in passenger travel.

In the 1950’s, Honeywell Aerospace and its legacy companies changed the face of flying with the development of the first gas-turbine engines and the ring laser gyroscope, which dramatically changed guidance and navigation forever. Sperry brought computer technology to the cockpit with electronic flight instrument systems, flight management systems and other digital technology, and Bendix introduced the first commercial weather radar system.Today, Honeywell Aerospace continues to innovate in the frontier of flight safety with traffic alert and collision avoidance technologies, the AlliedSignal Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System, and systems that help pilots avoid severe weather and hazards such as lightning and wind shear. We at Honeywell Aerospace are proud of our contributions to aviation history, but we’re just as proud of the history we’re making today.

We have created the state-of-the-art integrated Aircraft Environment Surveillance System for the Airbus A380, and our advanced flight management, power distribution, pneumatic, and landing systems will help A380 operators reach new heights of performance and efficiency.

We are a leading supplier of products and systems for Boeing commercial airplanes, and our integrated avionics system for the Boeing 777 sets a new technology and reliability standard. Today, we are part of the team working to define technology concepts for the next Boeing airplane, the super-efficient 777.

The general, experimental, and light business aviation industries also turn to our respected Bendix/King range of communication and navigation avionics, weather radars, flight controls, flight information services, and other products and services that help make flying safer, more affordable, and more enjoyable.

Honeywell Aerospace continues to work to improve the capabilities of military forces, developing systems that power unmanned vehicles, avionics for jet fighters, weapon sensors for precision targeting, and upgrades that extend the lives of proven aircraft and vehicles. We’re part of the Lockheed Martin team working on the Joint Strike Fighter program, and we’re proposing a wide range of systems for the Army’s Future Combat System.

For more than 40 years, Honeywell technology has helped with the exploration and creation of opportunities in space. Our products have been integral to Neil Armstrong’s first step on the moon, and to every manned mission to space since. Today, the Space Shuttle is equipped with Honeywell’s Multifunction Electronic Display Subsystem, and we’re reaching into the future of space technology, with our work for the anticipated shuttle successor, the Orbital Space Plane, the International Space Station, and our contributions toward creating a permanent orbiting scientific laboratory and workspace.

As powered flight begins its second century, Honeywell Aerospace continues to make history with leading technology, reliable products and systems, superior service, and dedicated employees. The contributions of Honeywell, its legacy companies, and five generations of employees, have advanced the science of aviation to make flying the world’s safest form of transportation, while helping to protect our nation and explore the universe. We look forward to continuing our long tradition of developing and delivering innovative aviation systems that meet the current, and anticipate the future, needs of the customer.

Tags: Aerospace