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Fuel tank inerting systems for civil aircraft




Smith, David E., author
Sega, Ron, advisor
Young, Peter, committee member
Chong, Edwin, committee member
France, Robert, committee member

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This thesis examines and compares a variety of methods for inerting the fuel tanks of civil transport aircraft. These aircraft can range from the 50-seat Bombardier CRJ-200 to the 525-850 seat Superjumbo Airbus A380 and can also include airliner-based VIP aircraft such as the Boeing Business Jet (BBJ) or executive-class aircraft such as the Learjet 85. Three system approaches to fuel tank inerting are presented in this paper with the intent of providing senior systems engineers and project managers a comparative requirements analysis and a thorough analysis of the different levels of documentation effort required for each rather than performing a simple technical trade-off study to determine which system architecture is the lowest weight or perhaps has the least parts count. When choosing a system architecture, requirements analysis is often overlooked and documentation workload is brushed aside in favor of purely technical analyses. This thesis paper aims to provide examples of why the non-technical analyses are also important in good systems engineering.


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