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Participant Guide

Aircraft Wiring Practices

An Interactive Training and Self-Study Course (25827)

An Interactive Training and Self-Study Course (25827) Presented by Brett Portwood FAA Technical Specialist, Safety

Presented by

Brett Portwood

FAA Technical Specialist, Safety and Integration

Massoud Sadeghi

Aging Systems Program Manager

Federal Aviation Administration

March 28 & 29, 2001

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTORY MATERIALS

Course Orientation

2

About This Course

2

Who Is the Target Audience?

2

Who Are the Instructors?

2

What Will You Learn?

14

How Will This Course Help You On-the-Job?

14

Self-Assessment

6

Pre- & Post-Course Self-Assessment Questions

6

COURSE MATERIALS Background

10

Introduction

10

Aging Systems Program

11

ASTRAC findings

15

Accident service history

19

Aging wiring overview

25

Introduction

25

Causes of wiring degradation

26

Current FAA guidance

28

Overview

31

Advisory Circular 43.13-1b

31

Topics to be addressed

31

Electrical load determination

31

Breaker and wire sizing/selection

33

Exercise 1: Circuit breaker size calculation

35

Figure 11-2 from 43.13-1b

39

Exercise 2: Wire size calculation

42

Figure 11-3 from 43.13-1b

44

Figure 11-4a from 43.13-1b

45

Figure 11-6 from 43.13-1b

46

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Figure 11-5 from 43.13-1b

47

Exercise 3: Wire harness current capacity

50

Routing, clamping, and bend radii

53

Exercise 4: Circuit breaker size calculation

75

Wire replacement and splicing

81

Wire terminals

88

Exercise 5: Terminal build up

102

Grounding and bonding

103

Wire marking

109

Connectors and conduits

112

Exercise 6: Pin arrangement

115

Exercise

7: Bend radius

123

Wire insulation properties

124

AC 25-16 requirements

129

Electrical fault and fire detection

129

Circuit protection devices

130

Wire separation

132

Introduction

132

Wire separation: 25.1309(b)

133

Wire separation: 25.903(d)

135

Wire separation: 25.1353(b)

136

Wire

separation: 25.631

137

Post-TC wire separation

138

Instructions for Continued Airworthiness

139

General information/overview

139

Cleaning requirements/practices

141

Wiring general visual inspections (WGVI)

142

Non-destructive wire testing (NDT) methods

145

Preemptive wire splice repair and/or wire replacement

145

Wiring installation certification

149

Introduction

149

Wiring diagrams

150

Actual wiring diagram

152

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Wiring installation drawings

153

Actual wire routing drawing

156

Actual wiring installation and sub assemblies

157

Actual wiring installation drawing parts list

158

Questions and wrap-up

159

Appendices AC 43.13-1b, Chapter 11 AC 25-16 Course Evaluation Forms

160

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Introductory Materials

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Course Orientation

About This

Course

About This Course Who Is the Target Audience? Who Are the Instructors?

Who Is the Target Audience?

Who Are the Instructors?

Who Is the Target Audience? Who Are the Instructors? Brett Portwood Aircraft Wiring Practices is designed

Brett Portwood

Aircraft Wiring Practices is designed to update participants about a wide variety of wiring issues. Through the two-day (four hours per day) Interactive Training format, Brett Portwood, FAA Technical Specialist, Safety and Integration, and Massoud Sadeghi, Aging Systems Program Manager, will provide you with the basic concepts of Aircraft Wiring Practices, a course that provides an overview of the aging wiring history, an update on current FAA guidance, detailed information on AC 43.13-1b, AC 25-16, wire separation, and Instructions for Continued Airworthiness, and a review of what to look for on wiring diagrams and wiring installation drawings.

This course is designed for new and experienced Systems and Propulsion Transport Aircraft engineers who require enough knowledge of wiring to be able to review data submitted by manufacturers.

Brett Portwood is the FAA Technical Specialist for Safety and Integration. Brett has 11 years experience with the FAA in certification of transport avionics systems, including fly-by-wire flight guidance systems, flight management systems, and electronic displays. As a Technical Specialist, he provides expertise in safety assessment methods and associated integration issues.

Brett is active in the FAA’s Aging System Program, ATSRAC, and wiring installation and maintenance practices. He assisted with the investigation (aircraft wiring) of the MD-11 Swissair 111 accident. He worked with Boeing to develop wiring practices workshops for FAA certification engineers and inspectors. Brett also was the FAA representative on the SAE S-18 System

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Safety Assessment commitee that authored ARP 4761, Guidelines and Methods of Conducting the Safety Assessment Process on Civil Airborne Systems and Equipment.

Prior to joining the FAA, Brett spent 12 years performing fault/failure analyses for industry and the Navy nuclear program.

Mr. Portwood has a BS degree in Physics from San Diego State University and has published professional papers on system safety assessment methods.

professional papers on system safety assessment methods. Massoud Sadeghi Massoud Sadeghi is the FAA Transport Aging

Massoud Sadeghi

Massoud Sadeghi is the FAA Transport Aging Systems Program Manager responsible for implementing improvements in the requirements of design, installation, mainenance, repair, and certification processes for airplane wiring. Massoud’s previous FAA responsibilities include: SAE, ARAC, certification, validations, and policy and rulemaking in the areas of electrical systems, HIRF, and lightning.

Prior to the FAA, Massoud’s industry experience included Boeing Military Airplanes (Wichita), re-engine, upgrading electrical systems, and rewiring military airplanes (KC-135s); McDonnell Douglas, designing new electrical systems for the new MD-90; and Boeing (Seattle), designing new electrical systems for the new 777s. Before college, Massoud did electrical wiring of commercial and residential buildings.

Mr. Sadeghi has taught college technical classes and company classes on Modern Aircraft Electrical Systems. He has both a BS and MS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

What Will You Learn?

After completing this course you will be able to —

Apply the concepts/aspects of aging wiring.

Identify wiring factors used when approving wiring diagrams.

Identify the main purpose of reviewing wiring installation drawings and the wiring factors used when approving these installation drawings.

Describe the requirements for Instructions for Continued Airworthiness as they relate to wiring.

The purpose of this course is to deliver a detailed presentation of all aspects of aging wiring. It covers applicable 14 CFRs, policy, and industry practices in the area of wiring. It will introduce primary factors associated with wire degradation. The course will also include TC/STC data package requirements, wire selection/protection, routing, clamping, splicing, and termination practices, along with various examples, pictures, mockups, videos, etc. The course includes wiring maintenance concepts (e.g., cleans as you go), including how to perform a wiring general visual inspection.

How Will This Course Help You On-the- Job?

Given appropriate wiring materials to review for certification, after completing this course you should be able to —

Describe the major factors of wiring degradation and list the characteristics of aging wiring.

Identify and use the current FAA wiring regulations and guidance.

Determine if the circuit breakers, conductors, and connectors are sized appropriately.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Determine if the type of wiring protection is appropriate for a given environment.

Determine if the number and type of clamps, the feed throughs/pass throughs, and conduits selected are appropriate.

Evaluate the routing of the wire to ensure it has been done in an optimum manner to prevent damage.

Identify what wiring information has to be in the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Self-Assessment

Self-Assessment

The instructor will ask you at the begining of the presentation to respond to the following questions about aircraft wiring practices.

Questions

 

During the live broadcast, use the keypad to answer these questions.

1.

What are the critical factors in addition to vibration that impact wiring degradation?

a. Moisture, heat, improper installation.

b. Improper installation, heat, length.

c. Moisture, age, resistance.

d. Heat, age, length.

2.

What is the minimum bend radius for unsupported wire?

a. 3 times the largest diameter of the wire or cable in a bundle.

b. 3 times the smallest diameter of the wire or cable in a bundle.

c. 10 times the largest diameter of the wire or cable in a bundle.

d. 10 times the smallest diameter of the wire or cable in a bundle.

3.

AC 25-16 is about

a. electrical load analysis.

b. electrical fault and fire detection.

c. wire routing.

d. wire maintenance and repair.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

4. What is the primary function of the circuit breaker in an aircraft?

a. To remove power from aircraft systems.

b. To protect aircraft equipment.

c. To protect aircraft wiring.

d. To protect electrical power sources.

5. What is a key factor used in selecting wire?

a. Marking method.

b. Breaker size.

c. Elasticity.

d. Voltage drop.

6. Wire current-carrying capacity decreases with altitude.

a. True.

b. False.

7. What is the primary purpose of conduits?

a. Facilitation of fluid drainage from wire bundles.

b. Ease of wire routing.

c. Protection of wire bundles against atmospheric pressure.

d. Mechanical protection of wires and cables.

8. During the build up of terminal studs, a cadmium-plated washer is

a. required for high vibration areas.

b. required for high temperature areas.

c. required when stacking dissimilar materials.

d. not required.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

9. To ensure proper integrity and health of an aircraft wiring system, the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness must be submitted for

a. aircraft with extended range operation within 60 days after certification.

b. aircraft with extended range operation prior to certification.

c. all aircraft within 60 days after certification.

d. all aircraft prior to certification.

10. In addition to reviewing the wire installation drawings, an FAA engineer or designee should perform a first-of-a-model general wiring compliance inspection.

a. True.

b. False.

11. When reviewing the wire installation drawing, ensure that

a. connector pin numbers are specified for all terminations.

b. wire routing is specified end to end.

c. standard practices are referenced for all wire routing.

d. at least the safety-critical wire routing is clearly specified.

12. Check all items that should be submitted (as a minimum) as part of the wiring installation data package.

a. Wiring separation diagram.

b. Wire installation drawing.

c. Wiring diagram.

d. Wiring repair manual.

e. Instructions for Continued Airworthiness.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Course Materials

Aircraft Wiring Practices

I.

 

Aircraft Wiring Practices

 
  Aircraft Wiring Practices     Brett Portwood: brett.portwood@faa.gov FAA Technical Specialist,
 

Brett Portwood:

brett.portwood@faa.gov

FAA Technical Specialist, Safety and Integration

 

Los Angeles ACO; ANM-130L

(562)627-5350

Massoud Sadeghi:

massoud.sadeghi@faa.gov

 

Aging Systems Program Manager

Transport Airplane Directorate; ANM-114

(425)227-2117

 

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Background

ANM-114 (425)227-2117   Version 1.0 1 Background   Why the need for wiring practices training?
 

Why the need for wiring practices training?

 

Aging Systems Program

Aging Transport Systems Rulemaking Advisory Committee (ATSRAC)

Accident Service History

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Background

A. Introduction

1. Historically, wiring was installed without much thought given to the aging aspects:

a) Fit and forget.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

b) Unanticipated failure modes and their severity.

(1)

(2) Arcing.

(3)

Arc tracking.

Insulation flashover.

2. Maintenance programs often did not address these aging aspects. Service history also indicates that Foreign Object Damage (FOD) such as drill shavings, caustic liquids, etc. does cause wiring degradation that can lead to wiring faults.

B. Aging Systems Program

Aging Systems Program

Aging Systems Program Instituted a comprehensive aging non-structural systems program Research to identify and

Instituted a comprehensive aging non-structural systems program

Research to identify and prioritize opportunities to enhance safety

A data-driven program based on inspections and service history reviews

Multi-pronged solutions developed in conjunction with aviation community

Modeled after successful aging structures program

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1. Addresses a recommendation from the White House Commission on Aviation Safety to add non-structural systems to the aging aircraft program.

a) FAA using a data-driven approach to address safety concerns.

b) Data collected from research and development, various inspections, service history review and surveys of industry.

c) Analysis of the data will result in revisions to maintenance programs, training programs and improved design solutions

Aircraft Wiring Practices

for wire bundle and component installations. The goal is to preclude accidents that may result from wire degradation.

FAA Aging Transport Non- Structural Systems Plan Air Transport Assoc. (ATA) study team: Using lessons

FAA Aging Transport Non- Structural Systems Plan

Air Transport Assoc. (ATA) study team:

Using lessons learned from TWA 800 and Swissair 111

Addressing recommendations from Gore Commission

Collecting data from

On-site evaluations

Meetings with PMIs, Airbus, and Boeing

Analysis of aging systems using NASDAC data bases

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2. Following the TWA 800 accident, the FAA initiated investigations into fuel tank wiring. These investigations revealed a need for a comprehensive review of all systems wiring. Around this same time the White House Commission on Aviation Safety and Security, or informally known as the Gore Commission, recommended that the FAA, in cooperation with airlines and manufacturers, expand the FAA’s Aging Aircraft Program to cover non-structural systems. The ongoing Swissair 111 accident investigation has provided additional focus on wiring practices.

a) The FAA requested that ATA lead an effort to address aging non-structural systems. ATA responded by forming the Aging Systems Task Force (ASTF).

b) The FAA formed the Aging Non-Structural Systems Study team. This team made detailed on-site evaluations of three representative aging aircraft.

c) Based on the on-site evaluations, meetings with industry, and analysis of data bases of service data, a plan was developed to address our aging transport airplane systems.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

FAA Aging Transport Non- Structural Systems Plan , c o n t . Study team

FAA Aging Transport Non- Structural Systems Plan, cont.

Study team, cont.

Established ATSRAC to coordinate aging systems’ initiatives with the FAA

Incorporated the Air Transport Association’s (ATA) aging system task force (ASTF) activities into ATSRAC

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d) This plan called for the establishment of “an Aging Transport Systems Oversight Committee to coordinate the various aging systems initiatives within the FAA.” This task has been met with the formulation of the Aging Transport Systems Rulemaking Advisory Committee or also known as ATSRAC. ATSRAC is a formal advisory committee to the Administrator and holds public meetings every quarter.

Aging Systems Program

FAAFAA ATSRACATSRAC •Fleet sampling inspections •Service data review •Working group outputs •Study team
FAAFAA
ATSRACATSRAC
•Fleet sampling inspections
•Service data review
•Working group outputs
•Study team inspections
•Inspection support
•Service data review
•Research and development
ProductsProducts
Inspection &
maintenance practice
improvements
Improved
Corrective
design
actions
practices
Improved
Improved
system data
training
reporting

Aircraft Wiring Practices

3. This chart provides a conceptual look at the ATSRAC process and identifies multi-pronged solutions. The products are a result of data collection from a sampling of the fleet, review of service data, and ongoing research and development.

a) The primary use of these products will be to determine whether there are changes needed to design, manufacturing, inspection, maintenance, and modification processes for the wiring on transport airplanes to assure the continued safe operation of these airplanes.

Aging Systems Program, cont.

Aging Systems Program , cont. Aging systems research, engineering, and development (R,E,&D) FAA R,E,&D –

Aging systems research, engineering, and development (R,E,&D)

FAA R,E,&D

Intrusive inspections

Arc fault circuit breaker development

Interconnect system testing and assessment

Inspection and testing technology development

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4. The programs shown on the slide are some of the R, E, & D programs currently in progress.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

C. ATSRAC findings

ATSRAC Findings Inspected 6 recently retired aircraft 4 wire types Intensive detailed visual inspection

ATSRAC Findings

Inspected 6 recently retired aircraft

4 wire types Intensive detailed visual inspection Nondestructive testing (NDT) Laboratory analysis

Purpose:Purpose

Determine the state of wire

on aged aircraft

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1. Results of detailed visual inspection, nondestructive testing, and laboratory analysis were analyzed to determine the state of wire on aged aircraft as a function of wire type and service history. In addition, the results of visual inspection were compared with the nondestructive testing and laboratory analysis to determine the efficacy of visual inspection for the detection of age-related deterioration.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

ATSRAC Findings, cont.

ATSRAC Findings , cont. ~1000 visual findin gs in the field Mostly mis-installation or traumatic damage

~1000 visual findings in the field

Mostly mis-installation or traumatic damage

On-aircraft NDT/lab testing resulted in many additional findings

Non-negligible degradation on wire, connectors, and terminals

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2. The working group choose to focus on six important categories of wire degradation:

a) Degraded wire repairs or splices,

b) Heat damaged or burnt wire,

c) Vibration damage or chafing,

d) Cracked insulation,

e) Arcing, and

f) Insulation delamination.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

 

ATSRAC Findings, cont.

  ATSRAC Findings , cont.   Results: Results: Visual inspection effective in identifying certain conditions
 

Results:Results: Visual inspection effective in identifying certain conditions (heat damaged/burnt wire and vibration damage or chafing)

Cannot be relied upon to find other conditions (cracked insulation, arcing, insulation delamination, and degraded repairs or splices)

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ATSRAC Findings, cont.

or splices) Version 1.0 1 0 ATSRAC Findings , cont.   Risk assessment made on wiring
 

Risk assessment made on wiring faults

Definite potential for long-term safety impacts in most cases

Recommendations:Recommendations: Make changes and additions to current maintenance programs for wires

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3. The conclusions are not sufficiently specific to serve as mandatory design or maintenance requirements.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

ATSRAC Findings , cont. Additional maintenance/design possibilities Periodic visual inspections Periodic signal path

ATSRAC Findings, cont.

Additional maintenance/design possibilities

Periodic visual inspections

Periodic signal path resistance checks

Preemptive splice repair or wire replacement

In-situ NDT

Reduce moisture intrusion/drip shields

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4. The recommendations resulting from this analysis (shown on this slide and the next ) suggest changes and additions to maintenance programs for wires subject to the conditions and influencing factors that occur in the transport aircraft operating environment. The recommendations specifically document how repairs should be effected once the condition has been observed. Current best practice is sufficient in this regard.

5. Furthermore, the working group’s recommendations should not be considered a comprehensive set of design and maintenance requirements for wire installations, nor should they be considered a substitute for specific detailed analysis. Each individual wire installation requires an analysis that considers, in addition to these recommendations, application-specific requirements.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

D.

 

ATSRAC Findings, cont.

  ATSRAC Findings , cont.   Additional possibilities , cont. Minimize proximate flammable materials Use of
 

Additional possibilities, cont.

Minimize proximate flammable materials

Use of heat shields

Maintain separation of critical systems wiring

Emphasis on clean-as-you-go philosophy

Use of arc fault circuit breakers

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TWA 800 Accident

circuit breakers Version 1.0 1 3   TWA 800 Accident   7/17/1996, Boeing 747-131, broke up
 

7/17/1996, Boeing 747-131, broke up in flight and crashed in Atlantic near New York

Ignition energy for center wing tank explosion most likely entered through fuel quantity indication system (FQIS) wiring

Neither energy release mechanism or location of ignition determined

 

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Accident service history

1. On July 17, 1996, about 8:30 p.m., TWA flight 800, a Boeing 747-131, broke up in flight and crashed in the Atlantic Ocean near East Moriches, New York. TWA flight 800 was operating under part 121 as a scheduled international passenger flight from

Aircraft Wiring Practices

John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), to Charles DeGaulle International Airport. The flight departed JFK at 8:19 p.m. All 230 people on board were killed and the airplane was destroyed.

a) The Transport Airplane Directorate is currently in the rulemaking process to address certification aspects of fuel tank design with regard to minimizing the potential for fuel vapor ignition. As part of the rulemaking focus, wiring as a source of direct and indirect arcing is addressed.

(1)

The next slides present some wiring lessons learned from reviewing the TWA accident and in-service aircraft.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

 

Wiring Lessons Learned

  Wiring Lessons Learned   Wiring to pumps located in metallic conduits Wear of teflon sleeving
 

Wiring to pumps located in metallic conduits

Wear of teflon sleeving and wiring insulation has allowed arcing inside conduits, causing a potential ignition source in fuel tank

Fuel pump connectors

Arcing at connections within electrical

connectors occurred due to bent pins or corrosion

 

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Wiring Lessons Learned, cont.

  Version 1.0 1 5 Wiring Lessons Learned , cont.   FQIS wiring Wire bundles with
 

FQIS wiring

Wire bundles with degraded and corroded wires mixed with high voltage wires

FQIS probes

Corrosion caused reduced breakdown voltage in FQIS wiring; fuel tank contamination led to reduced arc path between FQIS probe walls

 

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2. FQIS probes

a) Contamination in the fuel tanks (such as steel wool, lock wire, nuts, rivets, bolts; and mechanical impact damage) caused reduced arc path resistance between FQIS probe walls.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Wiring Lessons Learned, cont.

Wiring Lessons Learned , cont. Bonding straps Corrosion, inappropriately attached connections Worn static bonds on fuel

Bonding straps

Corrosion, inappropriately attached connections

Worn static bonds on fuel system plumbing

Corroded bonding surfaces near fuel tank access panels

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Wiring Lessons Learned , cont. Electrostatic charge Use of non-conductive reticulated polyurethane foam allowed charge

Wiring Lessons Learned, cont.

Electrostatic charge

Use of non-conductive reticulated polyurethane foam allowed charge build up

Fuel tank refueling nozzles caused increased fuel charging

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3. Electrostatic charge

a) In another case, the fuel tank refueling nozzles caused spraying of fuel into fuel tanks in such a manner that increased fuel charging, which also can lead to arcing inside the fuel tank.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Swissair 111 Accident Crashed off coast of Nova Scotia on September 2, 1998 Smoke in

Swissair 111 Accident

Crashed off coast of Nova Scotia on September 2, 1998

Smoke in cockpit

Fire in cockpit overhead area

Metalized mylar insulation blankets

23 wires found with arcing damage

Investigation on-going

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4. The aircraft, enroute from JF Kennedy, NY, to Geneva Switzerland, crashed in the ocean approximately 40 miles southwest Halifax Nova Scotia following a report of “smoke” in the cockpit. There were no survivors.

a) By September, 1999, the TSB had recovered approximately 98 percent of the aircraft by weight. The TSB elected to reconstruct the forward 10 meters of the MD-11 fuselage. Most of the aircraft pieces were about 6 to 12 inches in diameter and the components had to be molded and sewn together. The assembled fuselage presented a distinct footprint of fire damage in the overhead cockpit and overhead first class area.

b) Investigation into a number of in-flight/ground fires on MD- 11 and MD-80 series airplanes has revealed that insulation blankets covered with film material, also know as metalized mylar film material, may contribute to the spread of a fire when ignition occurs from small ignition sources such as electrical arcing and sparking.

c) It can not be determined at this time if the arcing initiated the fire or whether the arcing was a result of the fire.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Swissair 111 - FAA Plan of Action

Swissair 111 - FAA Plan of Action AVR-1 Directive (November 1998) Minimize potential fuel sources –

AVR-1 Directive (November 1998)

Minimize potential fuel sources

Replace metalized mylar insulation blankets

Minimize potential ignition sources

Focus on wiring

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5. Since results from flammability testing at the FAA Tech Center indicated that the metalized mylar insulation blankets can spread a fire from an arcing incident (the original test method was determined to be insufficient and has been updated), the FAA developed a plan to replace all metalized mylar insulation blankets.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

II. Aging wiring overview

A. Introduction

Wiring Overview Physical Age Properties WireWire DegradationDegradation Installation Environment Maintenance 21
Wiring Overview
Physical
Age
Properties
WireWire
DegradationDegradation
Installation
Environment
Maintenance
21
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1.

Wiring degradation

a)

Wire degradation is a process that is a function of several variables; aging is only one of these. Other main factors that influence wire degradation are shown in the above slide.

2.

Characteristics of aging wiring

a) The manner in which wiring degrades is therefore dependent upon the wire type, how it was originally installed, the overall time and environment exposed to in service, and how the wiring was maintained.

b) Service history shows that “how the wiring is installed” has a direct effect on wire degradation. In other words, wiring that is not selected or installed properly has an increased potential to degrade at an accelerated rate. Therefore, good aircraft wiring practices are a fundamental requirement for wiring to remain safely intact.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

B. Causes of wiring degradation

Causes of Wiring Degradation

Causes of Wiring Degradation Vibration Moisture Maintenance 22 Version 1.0

Vibration

Moisture

Maintenance

Causes of Wiring Degradation Vibration Moisture Maintenance 22 Version 1.0
Causes of Wiring Degradation Vibration Moisture Maintenance 22 Version 1.0
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1. Vibration – accelerates degradation over time, resulting in "chattering" contacts and intermittent symptoms. High vibration can also cause tie-wraps, or string-ties to damage insulation. In addition, high vibration will exacerbate any existing problem with wire insulation cracking.

2. Moisture – accelerates corrosion of terminals, pins, sockets, and conductors. Wiring installed in clean, dry areas with moderate temperatures appears to hold up well.

3. Maintenance – improperly done may contribute to long term problems and wiring degradation. Repairs that do not meet minimum airworthiness standards may have limited durability. Repairs that conform to manufacturers recommended maintenance practices are generally considered permanent and should not require rework if properly maintained.

a) Care should be taken to protect wire bundles and connectors during modification work, and to ensure all shavings and debris are cleaned up after work is completed.

b) Wiring that is undisturbed will have less degradation than wiring that is reworked. As wiring and components become more brittle with age, this effect becomes more pronounced.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Causes of Wiring Degradation, cont.

Causes of Wiring Degradation , cont. Indirect damage Chemical contamination Heat Installation Version 1.0 2 3

Indirect damage

Causes of Wiring Degradation , cont. Indirect damage Chemical contamination Heat Installation Version 1.0 2 3

Chemical contamination

Heat

Causes of Wiring Degradation , cont. Indirect damage Chemical contamination Heat Installation Version 1.0 2 3

Installation

Causes of Wiring Degradation , cont. Indirect damage Chemical contamination Heat Installation Version 1.0 2 3
Causes of Wiring Degradation , cont. Indirect damage Chemical contamination Heat Installation Version 1.0 2 3

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4. Indirect damage – events such as pneumatic duct ruptures can cause damage that can later cause wiring problems. When such an event has occurred, surrounding wire should be carefully inspected to ensure no damage is evident.

5. Chemical contamination – chemicals such as hydraulic fluid, battery electrolytes, fuel, corrosion inhibiting compounds, waste system chemicals, cleaning agents, deicing fluids, paint, and soft drinks can contribute to degradation of wiring. Recommended original equipment manufacturer cleaning instructions should be followed.

a) Hydraulic fluid is very damaging to connector grommet and wire bundle clamps, leading to indirect damage, such as arcing and chafing.

6. Heat – accelerates degradation, insulation dryness, and cracking. Direct contact with a high heat source can quickly damage insulation, low levels of heat can degrade wiring over long periods of time. This type of degradation is sometimes seen on engines, in galleys, and behind lights.

7. Installation – improper installation accelerates the wiring degradation process.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

III. Current FAA guidance

A. Overview

Current FAA Guidance 25.1301/1309 25.1529 25.1353 WiringWiring Policy 25.869 PracticesPractices memo AC 43.13-1b
Current FAA Guidance
25.1301/1309
25.1529
25.1353
WiringWiring
Policy
25.869
PracticesPractices
memo
AC 43.13-1b
AC 25-10
AC 25-16
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1.

Sections 25.1301 and 25.1309 apply in a general sense in that a system must perform its intended function in a safe manner.

2.

There are some specific electrical power wiring requirements, such as 25.1353, but they do not specifically address all aircraft wiring.

3.

14

CFR 25.1529 requires that instructions for continued

airworthiness are specified, which would include maintenance manuals/procedures for wiring. In support, 43.13(a) states that each person performing maintenance on an aircraft shall use the methods, techniques, and practices prescribed in the current manufacturer’s maintenance manual or Instructions for Continued Airworthiness.

4.

A large body of FAA guidance for wiring practices is in Chapter

11 of AC 43.13-1b. However, this section contains methods,

techniques, and practices acceptable to the Administrator for the repair of “non-pressurized areas” of civil aircraft, so it seemingly would not apply to pressurized transport aircraft. [Chapter 11 of AC 43.13-1b is an appendix of this Guide.]

Aircraft Wiring Practices

5. So the question is “where do I go to find FAA guidance for

acceptable wiring practices ?”

43.13-1b, AC 25-16, and AC 25-10 all provide aspects of good wiring practices. For now, there is no one rule or AC that ties everything together, however the FAA is in the process of initiating a part 25 rulemaking activity to address wiring installations.

The answer: 14 CFR 25.869, AC

Guidance: AC 43.13-1b

Guidance: AC 43.13-1b AC AC 43.13-1b: 43.13-1b: Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices - Aircraft Inspection and

ACAC 43.13-1b:43.13-1b: Acceptable Methods, Techniques, and Practices - Aircraft Inspection and Repair

Flight Standards AC

Chapter 11- Aircraft Electrical Systems

See Appendix in Participant Guide

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6. AC 43.13-1b covers a fairly comprehensive wide range of basic wiring practices topics.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Guidance: AC 25-16

Guidance: AC 25-16 AC AC 25 25 -16: -16: Electrical Fault and Fire Prevention and Protection

ACAC 2525 -16:-16: Electrical Fault and Fire Prevention and Protection (4/5/91)

Provides acceptable means to address electrically caused faults, overheat, smoke, and fire in transport category airplanes

See Appendix in Participant Guide

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7. AC 25-16 has an emphasis on wiring flammability, circuit breaker protection, wiring near flammable fluids, and associated acceptable test methods. This AC is being considered for updating.

Guidance: AC 25-10 AC AC 25 25 -10: -10: Guidance for Installation of Miscellaneous, Non-required

Guidance: AC 25-10

ACAC 2525 -10:-10: Guidance for Installation of Miscellaneous, Non-required Electrical Equipment (3/6/87)

Provides acceptable means to comply with applicable 14 CFRs associated with installation of electrical equipment such as galleys and passenger entertainment systems

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8. AC 25-10 contains minimal wiring practices specifics, including general load analysis requirements and circuit breaker protection requirements, which are more thoroughly covered in AC 43.13-1b and AC 25-16.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

IV. Advisory Circular 43.13-1b

A. Topics to be addressed

AC 43.13-1b Topic Outline

AC 43.13-1b Topic Outline

 
 

Electrical load determination

Breaker and wire sizing/selection Routing/clamping/bend radii Splicing Wire terminals Grounding and bonding Wire marking

 

Connectors and conduits Wire insulation properties

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Electrical Load Determination

Version 1.0 2 8   Electrical Load Determination   Load analysis Ensure that total electrical load
 

Load analysis

Ensure that total electrical load can be safely controlled or managed within rated limits of affected components of aircraft’s electrical system (25.1351)

New or additional electrical devices should not be installed without an electrical load analysis (AC 43.13-1b)

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B. Electrical load determination

1. Each aircraft electrical bus can safely support a predetermined amount of electrical load that is based on the electrical capacity of

Aircraft Wiring Practices

the aircraft generators and the aircraft’s overall electrical distribution system.

2. Where necessary as determined by a load analysis, wire, wire bundles, and circuit protective devices having the correct ratings should be added or replaced.

C. Breaker and wire sizing/selection

AC 43.13-1b Topic Outline , cont. Electrical load determination Breaker and wire sizing/selection Routing/clamping/bend

AC 43.13-1b Topic Outline, cont.

Electrical load determination

Breaker and wire sizing/selection

Routing/clamping/bend radii Splicing Wire terminals Grounding and bonding Wire marking Connectors and conduits Wire insulation properties

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Aircraft Wiring Practices

1. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Circuit breaker sizing and selection

Circuit Breaker Devices  

Circuit Breaker Devices

 

Must be sized to open before current rating of attached wire is exceeded, or before cumulative rating of all connected loads are exceeded, whichever is lowest (25.1357)

 

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Circuit Breaker Protection

1.0 3 1       Circuit Breaker Protection   “A circuit breaker must always open
 

“A circuit breaker must always open before any component downstream can overheat and generate smoke

 

or fire. (AC 43.13-1b, para. 11-48)

“Circuit breakers are designed as

circuit protection for the wire, not for protection of black boxes or

components

.” (AC 43.13-1b,

para. 11-51)

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a) Breakers are sized to protect the aircraft wiring as the main design constraint. Any further protection of components or LRUs is desirable but not mandatory.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

b) Ideally, circuit breakers should protect against any wiring fault that leads to arcing, sparking, flames, or smoke. But as we will learn, thermal circuit breakers do not always detect arcing events.

Circuit Breaker Protection , cont. Use of a circuit breaker as a switch is not

Circuit Breaker Protection, cont.

Use of a circuit breaker as a switch is not recommended

Repeated opening and closing of contacts can lead to damage and premature failure of circuit breakers

Most circuit breaker failures are latent

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c) For the most part, you won’t know a circuit breaker has failed until you need it.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

2. Exercise 1: Determining circuit breaker size

90 k VA 115v, 400 Hz T T #1 T
90
k VA
115v, 400
Hz
T
T
#1
T

Bus B

Exercise 1

Bus A

Bus C

Determine appropriate size for circuit breakers #1-6.

Decide which circuit breaker to size first.

#2 #3 R = 10Ω R = 5Ω T T
#2
#3
R = 10Ω
R = 5Ω
T
T
#4 T
#4
T

TRU 115Vac to 28Vdc

TRU 115Vac to 28Vdc
#5 R = 10Ω T
#5
R = 10Ω
T
#6 R = 5Ω T
#6
R = 5Ω
T

Assume power factor =1, and system loads will not change.

a) The maximum continuous current through a circuit breaker must be no more than 85% of its rating.

Determining Breaker Size

Determining Breaker Size 1. Determine current flow available voltage load resistance of load protecting 2. Determine

1. Determine current flow

available voltage

load resistance of load protecting

2. Determine breaker size

breaker current flow

85% rating factor

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b) This is the formula for determining breaker size.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Determining Breaker Size , CB #5 1. Determine current flow available voltage 28 28 load

Determining Breaker Size, CB #5

1. Determine current flow

available voltage

2828

load resistance of load protecting 1010

2. Determine breaker size

breaker current flow

2.82.8

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85% rating factor

== 3.293.29 AA

.85.85

36

c) After determining the actual breaker size, select the standard size for circuit breaker that is the closest to the wire current without being less.

What is the Standard Circuit Breaker Size? CB CB 1 1 =44.38 = 45 A

What is the Standard Circuit Breaker Size?

CBCB11 =44.38 = 45 A

CBCB22 =13.53 = CBCB33 =27.05 = CBCB44 =11.88 = CBCB55 = 3.29 = CBCB66 = 6.59 =

? A

? A

? A

? A

? A

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Ensure wire size compatible with circuit breaker rating. Dangerous to have small wires using large circuit breakers.

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d) Care must be taken to ensure that wire size is compatible with the circuit breaker rating. It is dangerous to have small wires using large circuit breakers.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

3. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Wire sizing and selection

Wire Selection Size wires so they: Have sufficient mechanical strength Do not exceed allowable voltage

Wire Selection

Size wires so they:

Have sufficient mechanical strength

Do not exceed allowable voltage drop levels

Are protected by circuit protection devices

Meet circuit current-carrying requirements

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Table 11-6. Tabulation chart (allowable

voltage drop between bus and utilization equipment ground)

Nominal Allowable Allowable System Voltage Drop Voltage Drop Voltage Continuous Intermittent

Nominal

Allowable

Allowable

System

Voltage Drop

Voltage Drop

Voltage

Continuous

Intermittent

12

0.5

 

1

28

1

2

115

4

8

200

7

14

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AC 43.13-1B, page 11-21

41

a) The voltage drop in the main power wires from the generation source or the battery to the bus should not exceed 2% of the regulated voltage when the generator is carrying rated current or the battery is being discharged.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

(1)

As a rule of thumb, Table 11-6 (as shown in the slide) defines the maximum acceptable voltage drop in the load circuits between the bus and the utilization equipment ground.

Table 11-7. Examples of Determining Required Wire Size Using Figure 11-2

Table 11-7. Examples of Determining Required Wire Size Using Figure 11-2

 

Voltage

Run

Circuit

Wire

Check Calculated Voltage Drop

 

Drop

Length Current

Size

1

V

100 ft

20 A

# 6

(.000445 ohm/ft) (100 ft) (20 A) = 0.89 V

0.5 V

50 ft

40 A

# 2

(.000183 ohm/ft) (50 ft) (40 A) = 0.366 V

 

4

V

100 ft

20 A

??

(.00202 ohm/ft) (100 ft) (20 A) = 4.04 V

7

V

100 ft

20 A

#14

(.00304 ohm/ft) (100 ft) (20 A) = 6.08 V

 

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b) This table is on page 11-22 of AC 43.13-1B. These calculations are based on standard conditions at 20°C. For higher temperatures, the formula shown in Figure 11-2 should be used. For calculating voltage drop, resistance of wire per unit length can be found in Table 11.9 of 43.13-1b.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Aircraft Wiring Practices Participant Guide Version 1.0 page 39

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Wire Selection , cont. Mechanical strength of wire sizes less than #20 Do not use

Wire Selection, cont.

Mechanical strength of wire sizes less than #20

Do not use wire with less than 19 strands Provide additional support at terminations Should not be used when subject to excessive vibration, repeated bending, or frequent disconnection

(ref. para. 11-66(a), page 11-21)

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c) If it is desirable to select wire sizes smaller than #20, particular attention should be given to the mechanical strength and installation handling of these wires (ref. paragraph 11-66, section 5, page 21, AC 43-13.1b).

(1)

Consideration should be given to the use of high-strength alloy conductors in small gauge wires to increase mechanical strength.

(2)

As a general practice, wires smaller than #20 should be provided with additional clamps and be grouped with at least three other wires.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

4. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Current capacity

Determining Current-Carrying Capacity Effect of heat on wire insulation Maximum operating temperature Single wire or

Determining Current-Carrying Capacity

Effect of heat on wire insulation

Maximum operating temperature Single wire or wires in a harness Altitude

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Aircraft Wiring Practices

5. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Exercise 2: Wire size calculation

Exercise 2: Wire Size Calculation

Calculate the wire size for this example.

Wire length = 40 ft

Circuit current = 20 A

Source voltage = 28 V

Wire type = 200° C

Max ambient temperature = 50° C

Max altitude = 20,000 ft

8 wires in a bundle

Use AC 43.13:

Figure 11-3 for wire gauge

Calculate temperature rise

Figure 11-4a for temperature derating factor

Figure 11-6 for altitude derating factor

Figure 11.5 for bundle

Calculate estimated operating temperature using the formula:

T 2 = T 1 + (T R - T 1 ) [(I 2 / I max ) 1/2 ]

a) Determine if an appropriate wire size has been selected. The estimated operating temperature must be less than conductor- rated temperature. If this is not the case, then the wire size must be increased.

b) The next slide provides a larger version of the formula and an explanation of each of the formula’s components.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Exercise 2: Wire Size Calculation

Exercise 2: Wire Size Calculation Calculating wire size Calculate estimated operating temperature using the formula below

Calculating wire size

Calculate estimated operating temperature using the formula below (ref. page 11-26):

TT 22 == TT 11 ++ (T(T RR -- TT 11 )) [(I[(I 22 // II maxmax )) 1/21/2 ]]

Where : T 2 = est. operating temperature T 1 = ambient temperature T R = conductor-rated temperature I 2 = circuit current I max = calculated current

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c) This formula is from AC 43.13.1b (ref. page 11-29).

d) Step 1. Determine the maximum allowable temperature rise, which is the wire-rated temperature minus the maximum ambient temperature.

e) Step 2. Use figure 11-3 for wire gauge.

f) Step 3. Use figure 11-4a to determine current for #12 wire at

150°C.

g) Step 4. Use figure 11-6 for altitude derating factor for 20,000 ft.

h) Step 5. Use figure 11-5 for bundle of 8 wires (assuming 100% loading).

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Participant Guide Version 1.0 page 44
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Aircraft Wiring Practices

Aircraft Wiring Practices Participant Guide Version 1.0 page 45

Aircraft Wiring Practices

Participant Guide Version 1.0 page 46
Participant Guide
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Aircraft Wiring Practices

Participant Guide Version 1.0 page 47
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Aircraft Wiring Practices

Wire Size Calculation Wire gauge = #12 Current for #12 wire at 150° C =

Wire Size Calculation

Wire gauge = #12 Current for #12 wire at 150° C = 60 A Altitude derating factor for 20,000 ft. = 0.92 x 60 = 55.2 A Bundle of 8 wires = 0.5 x 55.2 = 27.6 A

Calculate estimated operating temperature T 2 = T 1 + (T R - T 1 ) [(I 2 / I max ) 1/2 ]

T 2 = T 2 = Compare T 2 to rating for wire type to ensure T 2 less

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i) Step 6. Where : T 2 = estimated operating temperature

T 1 = ambient temperature

T R = conductor-rated temperature

I 2 = circuit current

I max = calculated current

j) Note: Estimated operating temperature must be less than conductor-rated temperature. If this is not the case, then the wire size must be increased.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

6. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Wire system design

Determining Wire System Design AC AC 43.13-1b, 43.13-1b, Section Section 5: 5: tables and figures

Determining Wire System Design

ACAC 43.13-1b,43.13-1b, SectionSection 5:5:

tables and figures provide an acceptable method of determining wire system design

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a) The applicant should ensure that the maximum ambient temperature that the wire bundles will be subjected to, plus the temperature rise due to the wire current loads, does not exceed the maximum conductor temperature rating.

b) In smaller harnesses, the allowable percentage of total current may be increased as the harness approaches the single wire configuration.

c) The continuous current ratings contained in the tables and figures in AC 43.13-1b were derived only for wire application, and cannot be applied directly to associated wire termination devices (e.g., connector contacts, relays, circuit breakers, switches). The current ratings for devices are limited by the design characteristics of the device. Care should be taken to ensure that the continuous current value chosen for a particular system circuit shall not create hot spots within any circuit element which could lead to premature failure.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

7. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Exercise 3: Wire harness current capacity

Exercise 3: Wire Harness Current Capacity

Determine if wires are sized properly for bundle assembly.

Wire harness = 10 #20 wires; 200° C 25 #22 wires; 200° C

Max. ambient temperature = 60° C

Max operating altitude = 60,000 ft

Circuit analysis = 7 of 35 wires carrying current at or near full capacity (7/35 = 20%)

Use AC 43.13

Figure 11-4a for current Figure 11-5 for bundle Figure 11-6 for altitude derating factor

a) The previous exercise looked at determining the size of a single wire. This activity looks at determining the sizes and numbers of wires in a bundle. The number of wires in a bundle reduces the overall bundle load capacity.

b) First calculate the temperature rise due to current.

c) Figure 11-4a to determine current for size 20 and 22 wires at 140° C.

d) Figure 11.5 for bundle derating for 20% curve and 35 wires.

e) Figure 11-6 to determine altitude derating factor for 60,000 ft.

f) Calculate the total harness capacity for #20 and #22 wires and for the total harness.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

8. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Wire selection

Wire Selection

Wire Selection

 
 

Conductor stranding

Minimizes fatigue breakage

Platings for all copper aircraft wiring

Plated because bare copper develops surface oxide film — a poor conductor

Tin < 150° C

Silver < 200° C

Nickel < 260° C

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a) Elevated temperature degradation of tin- and silver-plated copper conductors will occur if they are exposed to continuous operation at elevated levels.

(1)

For tin-plated conductors, tin-copper intermetallics will form, resulting in an increase in conductor resistance.

(2)

For silver-plated conductors, degradation in the form of interstrand bonding, silver migration, and oxidation of the copper strands will occur with continuous operation near rated temperature, resulting in loss of wire flexibility. Also, due to potential fire hazard, silver-plated conductors shall not be used in areas where they are subject to contamination by ethylene glycol solutions.

(3)

Both tin- and silver-plated copper conductors will exhibit degraded solderability after exposure to continuous elevated temperature.

Aircraft Wiring Practices

9. Breaker and wire sizing/selection: Wire substitution

Wire Substitution for Repairs and Maintenance When replacement wi re is required, review aircraft maintenance

Wire Substitution for Repairs and Maintenance