In July 2017, Lectromec published a white paper on electrical wiring system failures on commercial aircraft. This is a brief video of the findings and what can be done to improve EWIS reliability in commercial aircraft.
Video Transcript: Hello, I am Mike Traskos with Lectromec and today I will talk about results from our analysis of electrical wiring system failures on commercial aircraft in 2016.
The wiring systems of modern aircraft are complicated. Each has tens to hundreds of miles a wire and thousands of connectors and supporting electrical system components. It should not be a surprise that as aircraft age, the components age and they become more susceptible to wiring failures.
To determine the extent and frequency of EWIS failures on commercial aircraft, Lectromec reviewed thousands of service difficulty reports filed with the FAA. Our analysis of the 2016 data found that aircraft, older than 20 years old, are twice as likely to have EWIS failures than those in the 10-15 year bracket.
In a perfect world, these failures would be benign and only have a limited impact on the aircraft reliability. Lectromec’s analysis of the 2016 data suggests that 5% of EWIS failures resulted in an Emergency Landing diversion or aborted takeoff. This corresponds with one major EWIS failure per week; a slight increase from similar analysis Lectromec did on data from 2010 to 2014.
The data further showed 15% of EWIS failures resulted in the aircraft being grounded for a sustained period.
And to go beyond this, EWIS failures are underreported. I had the opportunity to talk with a maintenance engineer from a major airline who read through our white paper and I was told that the EWIS problems they have within their fleet noticeably exceed what gets reported to the FAA.
So of course, the question is if these numbers and failures a result of component wear out, maintenance failures, or poor design? The answer could be one or all three of these. But until the wiring system health, maintenance, and certification are reviewed is impossible to know how best to address the problem within your organization.
As a starting point, I recommend reading our white paper on EWIS failures. We provide some recommendations on what you can do within your own fleet to improve performance.
Also, if you want to be proactive evaluate your wiring system with the same rigor you would for your structures and engines, contact Lectromec. We can get you from weight wire to where you need to be.
Thank you for your time.