1991-09-01

The Use of High Voltage Direct Current in Aircraft Electrical Systems - A Navy Perspective 912173

The simplicity, reliability, and weight reduction potential promised by high voltage direct current (HVDC) electrical power systems has enticed aircraft developers to propose the use of such systems in modified form for advanced aircraft. However, HVDC systems have not been flown on any military or commercial aircraft and little has been done to independently validate the tradeoffs made and to analyze the impact a HVDC system will have on Naval aviation and its support. To rectify this, the Naval Air Systems Command established a working group consisting of Defense Department activities concerned with aircraft electrical power research and development, testing, avionics development, logistics, and safety. The working group was free to examine all aspects of the development, implementation, and use of HVDC aircraft power systems. It chose to concentrate on performance, weight, efficiency, avionics design, safety, logistics, reliability, distribution components, electromagnetic compatibility, and technical risk. This paper will discuss the technical, logistics, and system benefits and concerns expressed by the group and attempt to develop conclusions concerning HVDC in aircraft electrical systems.

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