The Centre combines innovative research and engineering knowledge to tackle some of the major research challenges in through-life engineering services. The group has over 5 years’ experience in the area of fault and damage detection and characterisation.
The research activities can be categorised into the following themes:
Characterisation of in-service component feedback for system design and manufacturing – A thorough understanding of the key mechanisms of failure which include wear, fracture mechanics, fatigue, and corrosion at the feature, component and assembly levels, supported by knowledge of how to identify and diagnose such failures along with the ability to predict the remaining useful life, and the means of restoring ‘as designed’ functionality are all essential to through-life product support. This research develops technology demonstrators which will capture component failure, damage and degradation data using well-known technologies: 3D imaging, 3d x-ray CT, phased array, eddy current and pulsed thermography for a variety of degradations and materials. The research studies the link between service performance and the initial system architecture, and develops new guidance for system design for improved service life thereby reducing the engineering service effort required and subsequent cost.
Reduction of ‘No Fault Found’ through System Design – The research aims to identify equipment design features (i.e. functions/components, measures of complexity or BIT/BITE) and correlate these to NFF attributes (i.e. fraction of faults detected / isolated, fraction of false alarms and rate of false alarms) in order to develop a NFF rate/burden predictor. The overall impact of such a NFF rate/burden predictor is that it will be used at the design phase, or to verify a proposed modification, to aid in developing equipment which is increasingly immune to NFF throughout its operational life. Intermittent failures in electronic systems, the reduced size of electronic chips, increase in their interactions and complexities have led to difficulties in diagnosing system faults; in particular when these faults occur at the component level and are intermittent in nature. This research investigates the Tools & Techniques which can be used to successfully diagnose intermittent faults and to provide intelligent reasoning on intermittent fault progression. Further, the research develops in-situ health monitoring technology to detect and characterise intermittent failures arising from such causes as dry solder joints, loose connections, damaged wiring and environmental degradation, which heavily contribute to the burden of NFF.
The Degradation Assessment theme works closely with the ‘Digital Service Engineering’ theme.
For more information please contact Dr Pavan Addepalli, Research Fellow - Degradation Assessment.