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ASSIGNMENT REPORT

On
AIRCRAFT FUEL SYSTEMS

DEPARTMENT OF
AVIATION TECHNOLOGY & AVIONICS
ENGINEERING
Submitted By

MOEZZ ASIF BATM-F14-024


ADIL HAROON BATM-F14-021
FARHAN HASHMI BATM-F14-005

Under the Esteemed Guidance of


SIR. AHMED HAMMAD

SUPERIOR UNIVERSITY LAHORE


(2014-2018)

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Table of Contents
GENERAL INFORMATION .................................................................................3
INTRODUCTION TO FUELS.............................................................................3
TYPES OF FUELS ...............................................................................................3
SOLID FUELS......................................................................................................3
LIQUID FUELS ...................................................................................................3
GASEOUS FUELS ...............................................................................................4
AIRCRAFT FUEL SYSTEMS ...............................................................................5
FUEL TRANSFER: ..............................................................................................5
FUEL JETTISON .................................................................................................5
FUEL QUANTITY GAUGING ...........................................................................5
FUEL MEASUREMENT EQUIPMENT ..............................................................6
FUEL GAUGING SENSOR TECHNOLOGY .....................................................6
CAPACITANCE GAUGING ...............................................................................6
CAPACITANCE PRINCIPLES ...........................................................................7
THE BASIC CAPACITANCE PROBE ...............................................................7
METHODS OF CAPACITANCE GAUGING ....................................................7
ULTRASONIC GAUGING .................................................................................8
TRENDS IN FUEL MEASUREMENT .................................................................9
PAST..........................................................................................................................9
CAPACITANCE GUAGING ...............................................................................9
MEASUREMENT ................................................................................................9
PRESENT ...............................................................................................................10
ULTRASONIC GUAGING ...............................................................................10
FURURE / OUR IDEA ..........................................................................................10
DIVIDED LIGHT FUEL SENSING ..................................................................10

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GENERAL INFORMATION

INTRODUCTION TO FUELS

A fuel is any material that can be made to react with other substances so that it releases chemical
or nuclear energy as heat or to be used for work. The heat energy released by reactions of fuels is
converted into mechanical energy via a heat engine. Fuels are also used in the cells of organisms
in a process known as cellular respiration, where organic molecules are oxidized to release
usable energy. Hydrocarbons and related oxygen-containing molecules are by far the most
common source of fuel used by humans.

TYPES OF FUELS

Chemical fuels are divided in two ways. First, by their physical properties, as a solid, liquid or
gas. Secondly, on the basis of their occurrence: primary (natural fuel) and secondary (artificial
fuel).

 Solid fuels
 Liquid fuels
 Gaseous fuels

SOLID FUELS

Solid fuel refers to various types of solid material that are used as fuel to produce energy and
provide heating, usually released through combustion. Solid fuels include wood , charcoal, coal,
Solid fuels have been used by humanity for many years to create fire. Coal was the fuel source
which enabled the industrial revolution, from firing furnaces, to running steam engines.. Both
peat and coal are still used in electricity generation today. The use of some solid fuels (e.g. coal)
is restricted or prohibited in some urban areas, due to unsafe levels of toxic emissions.

LIQUID FUELS

Liquid fuels are combustible or energy-generating molecules that can be harnessed to create
mechanical energy, usually producing kinetic energy; they also must take the shape of their
container. It is the fumes of liquid fuels that are flammable instead of the fluid. Most liquid fuels

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in widespread use are derived from the fossilized remains of dead plants and animals by
exposure to heat and pressure inside the Earth's crust. Some common properties of liquid fuels
are that they are easy to transport, and that can be handled easily. Also they are relatively easy to
use for all engineering applications, and home use.

GASEOUS FUELS

Fuel gas is any one of a number of fuels that are gaseous under ordinary conditions. Many fuel
gases are composed of hydrocarbons (such as methane or propane), hydrogen, carbon monoxide,
or mixtures thereof. Such gases are sources of potential heat energy or light energy that can be
readily transmitted and distributed through pipes from the point of origin directly to the place of
consumption. Fuel gas is contrasted with liquid fuels and from solid fuels, though some fuel
gases are liquefied for storage or transport. While their gaseous nature can be advantageous,
avoiding the difficulty of transporting solid fuel and the dangers of spillage inherent in liquid
fuels.

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AIRCRAFT FUEL SYSTEMS

All powered aircraft require fuel on board to operate the engine. A fuel system consisting of
storage tanks, pumps, valves, fuel lines, metering devices, and monitoring devices.Some of the
systems are as folows

 Fuel Transfer 

 Fuel Jettison 


 Fuel Quantity Gauging 


FUEL TRANSFER:

A fuel transfer system is needed in applications where multiple tanks are used for fuel storage to
ensure that fuel is consumed from the various tanks in accordance with a predetermined sched-
ule. This schedule (or fuel burn sequence) takes into account many operational considerations
including:

 Aircraft CG variation with fuel burn


 Wing load alleviation
 Feed tank maximum and minimum fuel quantities.

FUEL JETTISON

If an aircraft’s design landing weight is less than that of the maximum takeoff weight, a situation
could occur in which a landing is desired before suf cient fuel has burned off to lighten the
aircraft. Fuel jettisoning systems are required on these aircraft so that fuel can be jettisoned in
flight to avoid structural damage cause by landing the aircraft when it is too heavy. Fuel
jettisoning systems are also referred to as fuel dump systems.

The system must be designed so that any reasonably probable single malfunction in the system
does not result in a hazardous condition due to unsymmetrical jettisoning of, or inability to
jettison, fuel. The fuel jettisoning valve must be designed to allow fight crew members to close
the valve during any part of the jettisoning operation

FUEL QUANTITY GAUGING

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The fuel quantity gauging system measures the fuel contents of all feed and auxiliary tanks and
provides this information to both the flight deck and, when on the ground, to the refuel panel
display at the refueling station.

Some recent fuel gauging system designs use a Fuel Properties Measurement Unit (FPMU)
comprising one of each of the above sensors in a single assembly. A sample of the uplifted fuel
passes through this unit each time the aircraft is refueled thus capturing the key properties
required for accurate gauging. The information from the previous refuel process, which applies
to the residual fuel from the last flight, is retained in the gauging computer’s memory so that the
requisite properties of the new fuel combination can be determined.

FUEL MEASUREMENT EQUIPMENT

This section describes the equipment and technology associated with the measurement and
management functions of aircraft fuel systems.

FUEL GAUGING SENSOR TECHNOLOGY

There are a variety of methods that have been used to gauge fuel, ranging from successive
discrete level measurement, using multiple sensors such as flotation or thermal devices, to con-
tinuous measurement using full depth sensors such as capacitance devices. The most widely used
to provide accurate gauging is that utilizing capacitance gauging. A recent alternative method,
has been developed using ultrasonics. These two approaches are now discussed in detail.

CAPACITANCE GAUGING

The industry has almost universally accepted this method of gauging as the way to gauge fuel
quantity accurately. Although capacitance gauging dates back to a 1924 French Patent, it has
been steadily improved and advanced as new technology and materials have become available
over the subsequent 80 years. While the sensors are relatively unsophisticated, the long success
of capacitance gauging systems is directly related to their compatibility and longevity in the
relative hostile environment of the fuel tank. Capacitance gauging may be implemented in one of
two approaches; AC capacitance or DC capacitance gauging.

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CAPACITANCE PRINCIPLES

Capacitance is the physical property of an item to store charge and is developed by applying a
potential difference (voltage) across a non-conducting medium (dielectric). A capacitive
component (capacitor) is formed by placing a non-conducting medium between two conducting
plates. The charge is configured as lines of electrical field across the dielectric.

In an electrical circuit, a capacitor presents an impedance to the current (flow of charge)


developed by the voltage applied to the circuit. For the case of a steady state voltage, the direct
current (dc) flows in one direction in an exponentially decreasing manner until the voltage across
the capacitor is fully charged and matches the applied voltage causing the current to cease to
flow.

For the case of an alternating voltage, the alternating current (ac) flows as a current of alternating
direction that is providing an alternating charging and discharging current. It is the alternating
voltage mode of operation that is used in all fuel quantity gauging systems to excite the
capacitance probes.

THE BASIC CAPACITANCE PROBE

The fundamental principle of capacitance gauging is the difference in the dielectric properties of
air and fuel. This phenomenon is exploited by configuring a capacitor as two concentric tubes
arranged vertically or near vertically in a fuel tank. As the fuel level changes, the amount of the
probe immersed in fuel changes and correspondingly the ratio of air to fuel and therefore the
capacitance.

METHODS OF CAPACITANCE GAUGING

There are a variety of ways of computing fuel volume and/or mass. The traditional method had
been to use an array of probes in which each probe is characterized or profiled to provide an
output directly proportional to immersed volume from its wetted length.

In order to linearize the output of a probe in terms of immersed volume, it is necessary to


characterize the capacitance probe so that the rate of change of capacitance with wetted probe
length immersion directly relates to the rate of change of volume.

• mechanically, by varying the diameter of the inner tube of the probe

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• electrically by varying the relationship between the inner and outer tubes of the probe
• electronically by correcting the volumetrically non-linear probe output within the
signalprocessor software.

ULTRASONIC GAUGING

The fundamental distinction between ultrasonic and capacitance gauging is that ultrasonic
gauging uses a technologically different suite of in-tank sensors that is accompanied by changes
in both the signal conditioning interface and software within the processor. Once fuel height and
the associated fuel parameters have been accurately determined, the calculation of fuel quantity
is very similar to that of a capacitance system. Ultrasonic fuel height measurement relies on the
phenomenon that sound energy can be transmitted through liquid and be reflected at an interface
with that liquid.The basic principle of ultrasonic fuel gauging is its dependence on two
measurements:

• The speed with which the ultrasound travels through fuel, as measured by a velocimeter
• the round trip time for sound to travel upwards through fuel from the transmitting
transducer to the fuel surface and downwards back to the receiving transducer, as
measured by a probe. 


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TRENDS IN FUEL MEASUREMENT

PAST

CAPACITANCE GUAGING

The capacitive level measurement is based on change of capacitance. An insulated electrode acts
as one plate of capacitor and the tank wall (or reference electrode in a non-metallic vessel) acts
as the other plate. The capacitance depends on the fluid level. An empty tank has a lower
capacitance while a filled tank has a higher capacitance.

A simple capacitor consists of two electrode plate separated by a small thickness of an insulator
such as solid, liquid, gas, or vacuum. This insulator is also called as dielectric.Value of
Capacitance depends on dielectric used, area of the plate and also distance between the plates.

MEASUREMENT

Measurement is made by applying an RF signal between the conductive probe and the vessel
wall.
The RF signal results in a very low current flow through the dielectric process material in the
tank from the probe to the vessel wall. When the level in the tank drops, the dielectric constant
drops causing a drop in the capacitance reading and a minute drop in current flow.
This change is detected by the level switch's internal circuitry and translated into a change in the
relay state of the level switch in case of point level detection.
In the case of continuous level detectors, the output is not a relay state, but a scaled analog
signal.
Level Measurement can be divided into three categories:

 Measurement of non-conductive material


 Measurement of conductive material
 Non-contact measurement

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PRESENT

ULTRASONIC GUAGING

Ultrasonic liquid level sensors operate by emitting pulses of ultrasonic sound (that is, sound
outside of the audible range for human hearing). These soundwaves travel toward the liquid
medium being measured before bouncing back and returning to the transducer which produced
them.

The distance between the transducer and the surface of the liquid medium can then be calculated
based on the time elapsed between emission and return and the speed of sound. This distance is
subtracted from total tank or vessel depth, and thus liquid levels are accurately calculated.

FURURE / OUR IDEA

DIVIDED LIGHT FUEL SENSING

The light from a LED is directed into an optical fiber immersed in the liquid whose level we
wish to measure. The light travels through the fiber and, when the fiber is completely surrounded
by liquid. The total internal reflection occurs at the core–cladding interface, and the light reaches
the receptor practically without loss except for absorption. When the tank is not completely full
of liquid, total internal reflection occurs because the fiber has a cladding and the losses of light
are very small. In the exposed portion of the fiber, more total internal reflection occurs hence
more light fall on the photodiode or the LDR hence more current will be produced which will
move the guage respectively. The higher the level, the lower value in the reading of the
photodiode or LDR.

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