Intermittent Fault Detection Technology Pilot Implementation for U.S. Air Force (USAF)/Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC)

NCMS Project #: 140894

Problem: The Department of Defense (DoD)/United States Air Force (USAF) is currently challenged by the inability to detect and isolate faults in aircraft wiring bundles and Weapon Replaceable Assembly (WRA)/Line Replaceable Units (LRUs).  These faults include opens and shorts, degraded and intermittent signals, and insulation degradation.  The magnitude of the challenge is daunting, with the DoD spending approximately $2 billion annually just removing and replacing WRAs/LRUs that, when tested, are determined to be “no-fault-found (NFF).” 

Benefit: The adoption of the advanced technological capability contained in VIFD is to identify and then eliminate intermittent NFF resulting in a positive benefit for the general public.  The commercial aviation industry wastes $250,000 per year per aircraft due to undetected unrepaired intermittent NFF, which equates to roughly $40 million per year for commercial carriers.  Through this collaboration project Air Force Material Command will realize a significant return on investment as it utilizes this advanced diagnostic capability to detect, isolate and repair the root cause of intermittence in A-10 wiring harnesses.

Solution/Approach: The purpose of this collaboration is to pilot a use case of the Voyager Intermittent Fault Detector (VIFD) for the USAF’s A-10 fleet at a Repair Network Integration (RNI) node/field maintenance location to detect and repair/resolve intermittent faults that are unnecessarily driving A-10 avionics/electronic countermeasure system/other aircraft wiring harnesses back to depot-level for test/diagnostic/repair action.

Impact on Warfighter:

  • Improved readiness
  • Increased safety
  • Decreased maintenance costs

DOD Participation:

  • U.S. Air Force, Warner Robins
  • U.S. Air Force, Hill

Industry Participation:

  • Universal Synaptics
  • NCMS

Benefit Area(s):

  • Cost savings
  • Repair turn-around time
  • Maintenance avoidance and reliability
  • Maintenance management improvement
  • Improved readiness

Focus Area:

  • Business processes/partnerships