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FIRE DETECTION SYSTEM IN AIRBUS 320

CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION 3 SYSTEM DESCRIPTION COMPONENT DESCRIPTION OPERATION/CONTROL AND HANDLING CONCLUSION 4 5 7 14

INTRODUCTION
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On early aircraft, the task of detecting smoke and fire was reasonably easy because the pilot could see most areas of the aircraft from the cockpit. However, all larger and more complex aircraft were built, it became nearly impossible for the crew to observe all parts of an aircraft, and smoke and fire were often not detected until the hazard was beyond control. To resolve this problem, modern aircraft have overheat and fire detection system installed to provide an early warning of hazards so the crew can take appropriate actions to reduce or eliminate them. Overheat and fire detection system are designed with components developed for specific tasks, so, compared to other aircraft system, maintenance requirements for fire detection components are somewhat specialized. To be able to keep these system operating properly, a technician must understand the basic operating principles and maintenance practices used by various fire detection system manufactures.

SYSTEM DESCRIPTION
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Fire and Overheat Detection In this aircraft there is a thermo-sensitive loops which detect fire or overheat conditions. They trigger the warning by means of the Fire Detection Unit (FDU) when the temperature reaches the threshold of the monitored area which covered the engine and the APU. The engine fire and overheat detection system gets the electrical power from the DC system of the aircraft. For the engine there are two independent loops that installed in each engine nacelle. They are connected in parallel and according to an AND logic. The purpose of this logic is to prevent spurious FIRE warnings. For the APU, The detection system monitors the APU compartment where fuel and bleed air systems are possible fire sources. The detection system also comprises the two independent loops. Their connection also same for the engine, it connected in parallel and according to an AND logic which is to prevent spurious FIRE warnings. The fire detection system that is used in this aircraft is the electro-pneumatic type. In this system it consist of, where on each engine, there are two continuous loops for the fire detection. The loops are connected in parallel to a Fire Detection Unit (FDU). The connection is made through an AND logic to avoid spurious FIRE warnings. In case of failure of one loop, the AND logic becomes an OR logic. The aircraft can be released in this configuration. The fire detection loops are monitored by the FDU. The monitoring device indicates the loss of a fire detection loop to the crew members. For one engine,the construction in each loop comprises three fire detectors connected in parallel. The detectors are installed in the nacelle and pylon fire zones. It is connected to a separate channel of the FDU and through the related channel, to four of the eight lamps in a red warning light common to the two loops. This warning light is integral with the ENG 1(2) FIRE pushbutton switch located on the ENG/APU FIRE panel(overhead panel). The fire detection system can be tested using the TEST pushbutton switch on the ENG/APU FIRE panel. For the power supply,this system gets the electrical power from the DC system of the aircraft. For the engine fire detection system it has an interface with other systems such as :1. Electrical Power: DC Ancillary Equipment 2. Centralized Fault Display Interface Unit (CFDIU) 3. Flight Warning Computer (FWC) (Ref. 31-52-00), 4. Landing Gear Control and Interface Unit (LGCIU) 5. Annunciator Light Test and Dimming 6. Functional Interfaces

COMPONENT DESCRIPTION

Generally, it can be divided into 3 main section which is ENG/APU FIRE panel, fire detectors and fire detection unit. The components of the fire detection system are for each engine consist of an ENG/APU FIRE panel on the overhead panel with one ENG FIRE pushbutton switch and one TEST pushbutton switch. Then, the two fire detection loops are installed in parallel in the fire zones and connected to a Fire Detection Unit (FDU). Each of the fire detection loop comprises three detectors connected in parallel. And the last, one FDU per engine, which processes signals from the detectors. So, thats all about the overview description on the component that involve in the system. ENG/APU FIRE panel It consists of: The ENG 1(2) FIRE pushbutton switch, which can be pushed only if the safety guard is open. Each pushbutton switch has three main functions that is to indicate the FIRE warning generated by the Fire Detection Unit, to activate the microswitches involved in the extinguishing procedure, and arm the discharge function for bottles 1 and 2. The TEST pushbutton switch (one per engine). It is used to check the condition of the fire detectors (Loops A and B), Fire Detection Unit (FDU), indications, warnings and associated wirings (loop test). It also used to percussion cartridge filaments of the fire extinguisher bottles and associated wiring (squib test). Fire Detectors It consist of sensing element and responder assembly in each detectors. Sensing element A sensing element is a tube 0.063 in. (1.6 mm) in outer diameter and 0.018 in. (0.46 mm) in thickness. It contains a hydrogen-charged titanium core with a spiral wound around it. This spiral is made of an inert material which has a special property that can give off and absorb a gas. The gap between the sensingelement outer-tube wall and the core is filled with helium. The initial pressure of the helium is related to the pre-set temperature threshold selected for each sensing element. The sensing element reacts according to the ideal gas law. One end of the sensing element is hermetically soldered and the other one is connected to a 1 in. (25.4 mm) diameter stainless steel body called responder.

Responder assembly The responder contains a chamber connected to two pressure switches which is
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an ALARM switch and a MONITOR switch. The free end of the responder is connected to the aircraft electrical circuit. The detector has two sensing functions. It responds to an overall average temperature threshold or to a highly localize discrete temperature caused by impinging flame or hot gases. This results in the ALARM switch closure. The average and discrete temperatures cannot be adjusted. In addition, the averaging and discrete functions are reversible. When the sensor tube has cooled, the average gas pressure decreases and the core material absorbs the discrete hydrogen gas. If the detector leaks, the gas pressure decrease causes the MONITOR switch to open and generates a detector fault signal. The system then does not operate during test. The fire detection loop has three fire detectors connected in parallel. They are installed at the engine to pylon forward mount, in the fan compartment close to the accessories gearbox and vertically in the aft part of the core compartment. The fire detectors are installed in pairs on pre-formed, stainless steel supports on the engine. The sensing elements are installed with quick-release clamps which have teflon bushings and are designed for continuous high temperature operation. Fire Detection Unit The Fire Detection Unit (FDU) processes the signals received from the fire detection loops. There are three functional modules. First is two independent channels. It must have one for each detection loop. The second one iis to monitor the circuitry that is for maintenance purpose only. Each channel has its own power supply. The two channels normally operate together, with an AND logic, for the fire detection. However, if one loop is inoperative, the other loop can operate independently. Each channel receives and analyzes continuously the signal from its related detection loop. Three comparators are used for this analysis. The comparator is the FIRE comparator, CONTAMINATION comparator and INTEGRITY comparator. The output signals are generated via discrete signals and/or the ARINC 429 bus. The fire warning signals (aural and/or visual) thus generated are transmitted to the cockpit. The monitoring circuitry analyses and monitors continuously the fire detection system. In case of failure of the system the monitoring circuitry it will memorizes the fault in a nonvolatile memory and isolates the faulty channel. It also generates the appropriate discrete signals.

OPERATION/CONTROL AND HANDLING A. Fire Detection Unit 1. Operation of the channels Channels A and B are identical and particular to each fire detection loop. The input section of each channel comprises a bridge circuit with: - a reference voltage, - a variable loop voltage made of the three fire detectors in parallel. The reference voltage is sent to the three comparators (FIRE, INTEGRITY and CONTAMINATION) and forms the thresholds values. A resistor, upstream of each comparator, adjusts this reference voltage which becomes the comparator threshold value. Each fire detector resistance is 4.5 Kohms, thus the equivalent resistance of each fire detection loop is 1.5 Kohms.The equivalent resistance varies when a change of state occurs in the monitored areas of the engine. This generates a variable loop voltage at the three comparators.The comparator outputs are sent on the FIRE and FAULT logic gates. The logic gates generate the alarm outputs. (a) Normal condition In normal conditions (no failure, no fire, no test), the variable voltage of the loop is: - higher than the threshold 1 of the integrity comparator - lower than the threshold 2 of the fire and contamination thresholds. (b) FAULT circuit i- INTEGRITY Fault Any failure of the fire detector (responder/sensing element) causes an increase of the equivalent resistance of the three other fire detectors. A detector can be unserviceable because of: - the opening of a MONITOR switch installed in series with an integral resistance, - or the loss of the electrical signal. The loop voltage decreases and falls under the threshold 1 of the INTEGRITY comparator: this generates a LOOP A(B) INOP signal.

This failure description is also applicable in case of accidental grounding of the responder. ii- CONTAMINATION Fault If the responder or the connectors of FDU are contaminated: . the equivalent resistance decreases . the loop voltage is higher than threshold 2 and lower than 3 . the CONTAMINATION comparator supplies the logic gates and generates a FAULT signal. (c) FIRE circuit The detection of a fire by one of the responders causes the closure of the corresponding ALARM switch. This generates a voltage higher than the threshold of the INTEGRITY and CONTAMINATION comparators. The FIRE comparator supplies the logic gates and transmits a FIRE signal. 2. Controller unit The controller circuit operating software: - monitors the two detection loops, - isolates the failed detector and loop circuit and memorizes the failures in a non-volatile memory, - does a check of the fire test circuity when it is activated, - does the self-test at the first power-up of the FDU, - does the built-in test and transmits the test results on the ARINC 429 bus, - transmits the failure signals to the CFDIU via the ARINC 429 bus, - continuously transmits current and/or previous system status on the ARINC 429 bus, - provides a serial bus interface and does command and data transmissions. 3. Indicating

(a) FAULT Warnings FAULT warnings are generated via discrete signals. 1 - There is an INOP signal if any of the following conditions occurs: - an electrical failure (loss of power, connector not connected) - a failure in a detector - a failure in a detection circuit - the detection of a single fire detection loop for a time greater than 16 sec
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while the other loop is in normal condition. 2 - The FAULT warning signals thus generated are transmitted to the cockpit, at the following locations: - MASTER CAUT light - Upper ECAM display unit: ENG 1 (2) LOOP A (B) FAULT or ENG 1. - DET FAULT (The Single Chime (SC) sounds) (b) FIRE Warnings FIRE warnings are generated via discrete signals. 1 -There is a FIRE warning signal if any of the following conditions occurs: - FIRE A and FIRE B - FIRE A and FAULT B - FAULT A and FIRE B - FAULT A and FAULT B in less than 5 seconds. 2 -The FIRE warning signals thus generated are transmitted to the cockpit, at the following locations: - ENG/APU FIRE panel (1WD): ENG/FIRE pushbutton switch - ENG panel (115VU): ENG/FIRE/FAULT annunciator - MASTER WARN light - Upper ECAM display unit: ENG 1 (2) FIRE and fire extinguishing procedure - Lower ECAM display unit: engine page. (The Continuous Repetitive Chime (CRC) sounds.)

B. BITE Test 1. Operational test The operational test enables the pilot to monitor and activate the fire
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protection system. This test is part of the daily check-list and is available each time it is needed. The operational test can be performed on the ground or in flight. From the ENG/APU FIRE panel, a TEST push button switch (one per engine) checks the condition of the: - fire detectors (Loops A and B), Fire Detection Unit (FDU), indications, warnings and associated wirings (loop test) - percussion cartridge filaments of the fire extinguisher bottles and associated wiring (squib test). When you press the TEST pushbutton switch, the fire warning indications are triggered, the fire detection system is operational. For the engine 1 (same for the engine 2): i- on the ENG/APU FIRE panel (1WD): . the ENG 1 FIRE legend comes on, . the SQUIB and DISCH legends come on, ii- on the ENG panel (115VU): . the FIRE legend comes on, iii- on the panels 130VU and 131VU: . the MASTER WARN lights flash, iv- on the upper ECAM display unit: . the red ENG 1 FIRE indication comes into view, v- on the lower ECAM display unit: . the ENGINE page comes into view, vi- the Continuous Repetitive Chime (CRC) sounds. If the failure is detected during the TEST sequence, a FAULT message comes into view in the lower ECAM DU (For example ENG 1 (2) LOOP A(B) FAULT). 2. Built-In Test Equipment (a) Description The function of the BITE is to: - monitor the condition of the FDU and the related inputs, - analyze and confirm the faults and, - store them in the Non-Volatile Memory (NVM).

The FDU is a type 2 system. The FDU BITE functions are as follows: - acquisition of discrete input signals, - link with the CFDS (thru an ARINC 429 bus), - memorization of failure in a NVM,
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- tests. The BITE test of the FDU is performed at power up or when the maintenance test discrete signal is sent from the MCDU via the CFDIU. In the two cases, the BITE test is performed if and only if the aircraft is on the ground. Upon selection by the operator from the MCDU, the CFDIU displays the _FIRE PROT: FDU 1 (2)_ menu and presents data on the MCDU. For the system, the basic functions are: - LAST LEG/GND REPORT, - LRU IDENTIFICATION, - CLASS 3 FAULTS, - TEST. BITE Test duration: - at power up: 75 s, - at the maintenance test: 90 s. During a system test, all the detectors are isolated from the FDU. The detector conditions are simulated by the BITE to test any failure in the FDU and its connections. The BITE can tell if the failure is in the detector or the circuitry. (b) Test combinations used by the BITE are as follows: 1- Check: - loops A and B for normal operating condition, - the initial conditions to start the test. 2 - Simulate FIRE on loops A and B (Simulate normal condition). 3 - CONTAMINATION FAULT A, then simulate FIRE B (Simulate normal condition). 4 - CONTAMINATION FAULT B, then simulate FIRE A (Simulate normal condition). 5 - Check loops A and B for normal condition. 6 - Simulate normal FIRE A and B. After 26 seconds, when A is faulty, simulate contamination fault B (Simulate normal condition). 7 - Check loops A and B for normal condition. 8 - Simulate normal FIRE B and A. After 26 seconds, when B is faulty, simulate contamination fault A (Simulate normal condition). 9 - Check loops A and B for normal condition.
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10 - Simulate INTEGRITY FAULT on loop A then on B, 4 seconds later and check power supplies, filaments and low pressure contacts of fire extinguisher bottles (Simulate normal condition). 11 - Simulate CONTAMINATION FAULT on loop A and CONTAMINATION FAULT on loop B 6 seconds later. Simulate normal condition. 12 - END OF TEST. Check loops A and B for normal condition. (c) FDU Power-up Test i - Conditions of Power-up Test Initialisation Necessary Computer de-energization Time: - 200 ms. A/C configuration: - whatever the A/C configuration on the ground. ii - Progress of Power-up Test Duration: - 5 sec. Cockpit repercussions directly linked to power-up test accomplishment (some other repercussions may occur depending on the A/C configuration but these can be disregarded): - ENG 1 (2)/APU FIRE panel: FIRE handle is flashing four times. iii - Results of Power-up Test Test passed: - no message Test failed: - MASTER CAUT ON with single chime, - ECAM warning: ENG 1 (2) (APU) FIRE DET FAULT - ECAM STATUS page: FIRE DET 1 (2) (APU) INOP

QUESTIONS

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1- What is gas absorbing material? -Titanium

2- What is resistance material? Ceramic

3- What is the construction of Control Unit? The control unit is transistorized electronic devices. Consist of two component board assemblies, a test switch, test jack, wiring harness and an electrical receptical, all enclosed in a metal case.

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CONCLUSION As a conclusion it is crucial to all aircrafts to have fire detection units to be equipped. This is to ensure the safety of the passengers and flight crews as well as economical purposes. For this kind of aircraft which is A320 the spot type fire detection units are installed in the system. The fire protection system in this aircraft is located at certain area and it is interconnected with other system as well. This chain of system will provide a safe and comfortable to its passenger and the flight crew.

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REFERENCE
http://www.scribd.com/doc/6819438/A320-Notes http://www.vbird-va.nl/airbus/docs/Operating%20Manual.pdf http://pmgasser.ch/airbus_memos/downloads/A320_AIR.pdf http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7QcOgLdwg9w http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bq44N_yllQ Maintenance Manual (soft copy)

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