Case Studies

Requirements Capture - In Flight Refuelling System Test Rig

The customer required a Test Rig for in-flight refuelling equipment; both under wing pods to be used by aircraft not originally designed as tankers and also systems to be installed within a tanker. The rig was required to check the end to end performance of the fuel delivery system, including the ability to wind the hose out to the receiving aircraft, responding properly to flight conditions, deliver the fuel and then recover the hose afterwards.

The Project was primarily about Requirements Capture, but there was an element of Concept Design because the Customer was replacing a pre-existing system and needed to replicate the functionality using modern equipment.

Over a period of several months we analysed the existing system and interviewed the stakeholders to identify the key requirements. These Requirements included many functional elements, including a fuel delivery system, an aircraft hydraulic system, a pressure testing system a high speed winding system, electrical power supplies, an air cooling system, structural steel work and a Control System.

The Requirements also included a number of non-functional elements including material restrictions, Safety, including ATEX regulations, environmental and EMC requirements and installation and maintenance.

As part of the work, we were involved in the specification for the building to house the Rig and also produced the Requirements for the associated Fuel Farm.  This included providing support with planning aspects, in particular the impact on noise levels and risks with respect to fire and explosion.

Feedback from the customer was positive with particular emphasis on the range and thoroughness of the work carried out.

Concept Design - Aero Engine Spinning Facility

The customer required a Spinning Facility for fan and turbine components of large commercial aero engines. The Requirements Specification had already been produced, but the customer wanted to ‘steer’ the solution towards their vision of the finished item. They therefore needed a Concept Design.

We were originally contracted by the prime contractor to provide support with the Data Acquisition aspects. However, our experience of process and specification development meant that we eventually took a major role in the development of the Concept Design document.

The Requirements for the Spinning Facility included a drive system to rotate the test piece, a vacuum system, a test vehicle to carry the test piece in and out of the Rig, a mounting structure for the test vehicle, heating and cooling systems to maintain test piece temperature, containment shielding, cameras and lighting, a Data Acquisition System, a bird ingestion test capability and a control system.

The Requirements also included a number of non-functional elements, including materials, Safety, Environmental and interfaces to the building.

Feedback from both the end customer and the prime contractor was very positive with particular thanks for the support on the development of the documentation.

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