Ground and flight tests of an innovative fuel management system in a twin-engine helicopter

Carlos C Insaurralde, Jose M. Giron-Sierra, Santiago Cifuentes, Juan F. Jimenez

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Citations (Scopus)


The concept, functional aspects, and experiments based on lab prototypes of an innovative approach for aircraft fuel management have been developed in recent years. The main approach innovation is the replacement of the conventional central fuel computer with distributed and interconnected Smart Fuel Components (SFCs). This solution lowers the wiring weight, reduce the chance of a faulty connection, and simplify maintenance. This paper presents the experimental results obtained from ground and flight tests carried out on the implementation the above approach in a twin-engine helicopter. The SFC software is deployed in the helicopter in ground to be tested. Once the results obtained from the ground test are accepted, the same SFC software is tested in flight. The ground-tested and flight-tested functions for the fuel control system are: fuel supply, display of fuel levels, fuel transfer, refueling/defueling, measurement of height, density and flow of fuel, and monitoring/surveillance. The objectives of the ground and flight tests are to prove secure engine fuel supply for engine "two" during flight, reliable fuel gauging during flight, and the above selected functions as basis for system operability. This paper also describes the testing cases and criteria, and the main project achievements for ground and flight tests in a twin-engine helicopter.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2013 IEEE International Systems Conference
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)978-1-4673-3107-4
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Event7th Annual IEEE International Systems Conference - Orlando, FL, United States
Duration: 15 Apr 201318 Apr 2013


Conference7th Annual IEEE International Systems Conference
Abbreviated titleSysCon 2013
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityOrlando, FL


  • smart fuel components
  • avionics system
  • distributed fuel control
  • embedded control software
  • open system architecture


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