There is a growing problem that threatens the operational readiness, sustainment and ownership cost of military aircraft. However, recent technical developments have made possible a new inspection method that greatly mitigates this threat, and now multiple Air Force, Navy and NATO case studies are validating the effectiveness of this new capability. The growing problem is intermittent faults in aging aircraft electronic boxes. The recent development is the Intermittent Fault Detection & Isolation System (IFDIS).
An intermittent fault, or momentary “open,” can be due to a number of different conditions including a cracked solder joint, a corroded contact, a sprung connector receptacle, a loose crimp connection, a hairline crack in a printed circuit trace, a loose wire wrap, or various other conditions all very common in electronic equipment. As the electronic equipment items are pulled from the errant system for bench test, they often test No Fault Found (NFF) and Cannot Duplicate (CND). No repair is performed, because no problem can be detected.
Conventional scanning ONE circuit at a time test equipment is simply not designed to or capable of detecting intermittent circuits. Rather conventional test equipment is designed to test for nominal operation, and usually “averages out,” and hence hides, any short term anomalous intermittent event(s). The IFDIS is specifically designed to detect and isolate intermittent circuits in electronics.