Friday, September 12, 2014

Servicing a jumbo jet

Nowadays, very few of us get to see the controls of a wide body jet.  But for one of Keysight’s customers working in the aerospace industry as a design engineer, this is a common work space.  He would make changes at the control here and verify that the proper results followed.  Many times the results are simple and can be measured with a handheld multimeter.  The unfortunate challenge is that the test points mostly reside not on the flight deck, but in the lower electronics bay underneath.  However, getting there is not so simple or easy.

Here is a picture of a wide body jet.  One can see the passenger door on its left front.  There is a service door on its right, almost a mirror image of the passenger door.  One gets into the lower electronics bay from a smaller door, located below the service door.  Literally it is impossible to go back and forth between the controls on the flight deck and the test points in the electronics bay.  He must have a helper or rig up a close circuit TV to allow him to read the meter readings.  He did both, depending on the occasion.  Not a fun or efficient part of his work.

Keysight’s Remote Link Solution is ideally suited for this type of testing.  Using Bluetooth communication to his Android tablet, our engineer is now able to track his testing data on the flight deck.  The meter is left attached at the proper test points in the lower electronics bay.
Like all Keysight handheld multimeter, the U1272A he uses has an IR port in the back, besides the usual LCD display in front.  The Bluetooth adaptor, U1177A, snapped over the IR port converts the IR link into wireless RF signal.  Our engineer received the RF signal on his Android Bluetooth port.  He even has a choice of two different free apps to manage and process the measurement information.  The Mobile Meter app captures and displays up to three live meters on screen.  The more complex Mobile Logger app further logs all three meter readings over time and presents the results in either graphical or numeric format.  The entire process takes only a few clicks to set up.

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