• FLIGHT TEST AIRBORNE DATA PROCESSING SYSTEM

      Eccles, Lee H.; Muckerheide, John J.; Boeing Commercial Airplane Company (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1986-10)
      The Experimental Flight Test organization of the Boeing Commercial Airplane Company has an onboard data reduction system known as the Airborne Data Analysis/Monitor System or ADAMS. ADAMS has evolved over the last 11 years from a system built around a single minicomputer to a system using two minicomputers to a distributed processing system based on microprocessors. The system is built around two buses. One bus is used for passing setup and control information between elements of the system. This is burst type data. The second bus is used for passing periodic data between the units. This data originates in the sensors installed by Flight Test or in the Black Boxes on the airplane. These buses interconnect a number of different processors. The Application Processor is the primary data analysis processor in the system. It runs the application programs and drives the display devices. A number of Application Processors may be installed. The File Processor handles the mass storage devices and such common peripheral devices as the printer. The Acquisition Interface Assembly is the entry point for data into ADAMS. It accepts serial PCM data from either the data acquisition system or the tape recorder. This data is then concatenated, converted to engineering units, and passed to the rest of the system for further processing and display. Over 70 programs have been written to support activities on the airplane. Programs exist to aid the instrumentation engineer in preparing the system for flight and to minimize the amount of paper which must be dealt with. Additional programs are used by the analysis engineer to evaluate the aircraft performance in real time. These programs cover the tests from takeoff through cruise testing and aircraft maneuvers to landing. They are used to analyze everything from brake performance to fuel consumption. Using these programs has reduced the amount of data reduction done on the ground and in many cases eliminated it completely.