This paper presents analytical techniques for aiding system designers in making aircraft engine health management sensor selection decisions. The presented techniques, which are based on linear estimation and probability theory, are tailored for gas turbine engine performance estimation and gas path fault diagnostics applications. They enable quantification of the performance estimation and diagnostic accuracy offered by different candidate sensor suites. For performance estimation, sensor selection metrics are presented for two types of estimators including a Kalman filter and a maximum a posteriori estimator. For each type of performance estimator, sensor selection is based on minimizing the theoretical sum of squared estimation errors in health parameters representing performance deterioration in the major rotating modules of the engine. For gas path fault diagnostics, the sensor selection metric is set up to maximize correct classification rate for a diagnostic strategy that performs fault classification by identifying the fault type that most closely matches the observed measurement signature in a weighted least squares sense. Results from the application of the sensor selection metrics to a linear engine model are presented and discussed. Given a baseline sensor suite and a candidate list of optional sensors, an exhaustive search is performed to determine the optimal sensor suites for performance estimation and fault diagnostics. For any given sensor suite, Monte Carlo simulation results are found to exhibit good agreement with theoretical predictions of estimation and diagnostic accuracies.

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