Instrumentation of the external fuel tank pylon
Chua, Wee Sing.
Date of Issue2010
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
This project is a continuation of a previous student’s final year project. As a reference to begin with, the author was handed the “F-16 Non-Jettisonable Fuel Pylons Flight Loads Instrumentation and Calibration Report CCP5883” report produced by General Dynamics in 1984. According to the RSAF, the pylons were calibrated previously with the data in this set of document; however the methodology remains unknown to RSAF. Therefore, the author of this project was tasked to understand this set of document thoroughly and replicate a set of calibration procedures for the pylon. The need for calibration arises due to amendments in the circuitry of the strain gauges in the system. One of the main reasons is that strain gauges installed in the pylons are subjected to wear and tear, resulting in the need for replacement of the gauges occasionally, after which re- calibration is necessary. Another reason is the removal of components on the pylons for overhaul and maintenance. This results in strain gauge wires to be cut so that sub-assemblies can be removed. The cutting of wires alters the resistance of the circuitry and therefore upon soldering back the wires, calibration is required. To address the requirements, the previous batch of students has already designed and fabricated a test fixture for holding the pylons while calibration loads are applied. Therefore, as a continuation to the project, the author is required to address two main issues during his 10- months involvement. Firstly, the text fixture’s structural integrity needs to be verified and therefore a test plan is required. Secondly, an instrumentation and calibration procedure needs to be documented. Meaning to say, a detailed plan explaining the steps and calculations required in the procedure, corresponding with the report given by General Dynamics, has to be thought through carefully and documented in this report. This is to enable future readers to carry out testing on the pylons based on this report. Lastly, to allow smooth transition of this project to the next batch of students, a detailed explanation of the General Dynamics Report will be provided.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University