Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Healthier engines for a healthier planet

The aircraft engine industry has stressed the need for improved engine emission measurement techniques used to determine whether an engine will meet certification standards. An EU-funded initiative has met that need, and then some.
Healthier engines for a healthier planet
Specifically, the aerospace engine industry has called for a cost-effective and highly accurate system that can produce fast results based on International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards.

The ‘Remote sensing technique for aeroengine emission certification and monitoring’ (Aerotest) project set out to fine-tune optical methods applied to emissions testing. These methods provide a non-intrusive way of evaluating pollutants present in aeroengine exhaust, with results applicable not only to the certification process but also to detection of possible engine malfunctions.

Previous European projects demonstrated the value of using two non-intrusive techniques, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) to measure various gaseous emissions and laser-induced incandescence (LII) to measure soot particles.

The Aerotest project made important advancements in the calibration of both systems increasing accuracy and detection. They carried out extensive industrial tests on small and large engines and included modifications enabling accurate representations of specific engine types.

In addition, they used the emissions correlations models in conjunction with engine performance models to formulate automated recognition criteria to be used in engine health monitoring and diagnosis of malfunctions.

An Aerospace Information Report (AIR) was produced and the project results were presented to the Aircraft Exhaust Emissions Measurement Committee.

In conclusion, the Aerotest project significantly advanced the accuracy and efficiency of non-intrusive methods used to monitor emissions, filling a need expressed by manufacturers for both the certification process as well as in diagnosis of engine malfunction.

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