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A Micro Fabricated Current Sensor for Arc Fault Detection of Aircraft Wiring and Inter-Connect

Brian Moffat, Marc Desmulliez
The research involved investigated the aging and failure mechanisms that can lead to catastrophic failure of aircraft wiring and interconnect.

This work was carried out under an EPSRC Case Studentship in conjunction with Ultra Electronics BCF (Formerly BCF Designs Ltd). The research involved investigated the aging and failure mechanisms that can lead to catastrophic failure of aircraft wiring and interconnect. The solution was based route the miniaturisation of sensors commonly found in aircraft such as time-stress measurement systems. On top of this more advanced signal processing and decision making techniques would be required. These sensors were to be acceleration, stress, temperature, humidity and wide band current sensor(s). The current sensor was investigated more closely which resulted in the design, manufacture and test of a planar rogowski coil sensor using UV LIGA techniques. The current sensor has no magnetic core therefore will not saturate at high current loads and has a very good response to fast rising transient signals such as partial discharges or arcing.