Advanced Diagnosis for Sustainable Flight Guidance and Control: the European ADDSAFE project

A research consortium of 8 European partners from industry (Airbus, Deimos Space), research establishments (DLR, MTA SZTAKI) and Universities (Bordeaux, Delft, Hull, Leicester) was established in July 2009 with funding from the European Union 7th Framework Program to address the challenge of the future sustainable aircraft: to be cleaner, quieter, smarter and more affordable. The overall aim of the project led by Deimos Space and named “ Advanced Fault Diagnosis for Sustainable Flight Guidance and Control (ADDSAFE) ”, was to contribute to the future aircraft initiative through the development of advanced Fault Detection and Diagnosis (FDD) techniques that can be applied in the Flight Control System (FCS). More precisely, it can be demonstrated that improving the fault diagnosis performance in the FCS allows to optimize the aircraft structural design (resulting in weight saving), which in turn helps improve aircraft performance and to decrease its environmental footprint (e.g. fuel consumption and noise). The FDD challenge tackled by ADDSAFE contained sensor and actuator malfunction detections. The importance of the studies carried out within the project arose, on the one hand, due to the industrial representativeness of the benchmark proposed by Airbus, and on the other hand, due to the industrial-level assessment and validation of the designs by Deimos and Airbus . The project concluded at the end of October 2012 with a demonstration of the designs in the actual Airbus flight control system V&V test benches in Toulouse.

During the project the team of MTA SZTAKI including Prof. József Bokor , András Edelmayer , Zoltán Szabó and  Bálint Vanek developed two advanced FDD concepts, one based on aircraft level mathematical model and another using the local actuator component level description. After a rigorous technology evaluation process carried out by the industrial partners the design of SZTAKI was selected to be evaluated on the real actual flight control computers of the aircraft. Based on the success of the project Airbus is further evaluating the FDD concepts, using its internal funding sources, in close cooperation with SZTAKI to see the applicability of the proposed schemes for future generation of aircraft.