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Integrated Wireless Sensing


Current aircraft monitoring systems use sensors that are hard-wired to their electronic acquisition unit.

  • It precludes acquisition of major parameters where wires cannot be installed.
  • It results in complex installation.
  • It very often results in increased weight.

Current wireless technologies enable an easy and flexible installation, but their design does not match aircraft monitoring needs as:

  • autonomy is limited and re-charging is required
  • compatibility is not reached in the harsh aircraft environment.

Matching aircraft constraints and power autonomy are targets to be met by wireless monitoring systems operating at low data rates.

WISE will investigate ways to integrate wireless technologies in the aircraft systems environment, for which the sensor power supply has to be autonomous.

WISE technologies will be usable in any fixed-wing aircraft or rotorcraft.

Project objectives

  • To enhance aircraft system monitoring by developing concepts based on new wireless technologies and integrated sensing solutions, which have autonomous sensor power and low consumption, and are compatible with the harsh environment of aircraft systems.
  • To allow the monitoring of new parameters, or replace/simplify complex existing solutions with physical links (wire, fluid).
  • To allow continuous monitoring or improve redundancy when the link with the physical solutions would have been severed or turned off to improve information segregation.

All this will lead to improvements in aircraft design, maintainability, availability and the associated costs, reduced weight, fuel consumption and emissions.

Description of the work

The objective of the work is to develop three kinds of technologies:

1. a Radio Frequency (RF) transmission through the open air medium that can remotely power the sensing element.

2. a RF transmission through a complex environment comprising a metallic or composite aircraft structure. This technique should allow communication coverage through the air within the complete aircraft.

Self-power generation will be investigated and could be integrated at the sensor level.

3. a technique capable of energy and data transmission through a close metallic envelope. Non-RF techniques, such as the ultrasonic technique, will be investigated, including coupling with power generation techniques.

The performances of these technologies will be verified by simulation, laboratory testing and finally by ground measurements on an iron bird for RF technologies.

Expected results

The results expected are to have proven technology available for future programmes and products and to export to the non-aeronautical industry.

WISE intends to contribute to the standardisation of wireless technology usage in the aircraft.