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European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) Aircraft Maintenance Licence Programme

Module 11A Licence Category B1


Turbine Aeroplane Aerodynamics, Structures and Systems
11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)

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Module 11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)

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Copyright Notice
Copyright. All worldwide rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form by any other means whatsoever: i.e. photocopy, electronic, mechanical recording or otherwise without the prior written permission of Your Company Ltd.

Knowledge Levels Category A, B1, B2 and C Aircraft Maintenance Licence


Basic knowledge for categories A, B1 and B2 are indicated by the allocation of knowledge levels indicators (1, 2 or 3) against each applicable subject. Category C applicants must meet either the category B1 or the category B2 basic knowledge levels. The knowledge level indicators are defined as follows:

LEVEL 1
A familiarisation with the principal elements of the subject. Objectives: The applicant should be familiar with the basic elements of the subject. The applicant should be able to give a simple description of the whole subject, using common words and examples. The applicant should be able to use typical terms.

LEVEL 2
A general knowledge of the theoretical and practical aspects of the subject. An ability to apply that knowledge. Objectives: The applicant should be able to understand the theoretical fundamentals of the subject. The applicant should be able to give a general description of the subject using, as appropriate, typical examples. The applicant should be able to use mathematical formulae in conjunction with physical laws describing the subject. The applicant should be able to read and understand sketches, drawings and schematics describing the subject. The applicant should be able to apply his knowledge in a practical manner using detailed procedures.

LEVEL 3
A detailed knowledge of the theoretical and practical aspects of the subject. A capacity to combine and apply the separate elements of knowledge in a logical and comprehensive manner. Objectives: The applicant should know the theory of the subject and interrelationships with other subjects. The applicant should be able to give a detailed description of the subject using theoretical fundamentals and specific examples. The applicant should understand and be able to use mathematical formulae related to the subject. The applicant should be able to read, understand and prepare sketches, simple drawings and schematics describing the subject. The applicant should be able to apply his knowledge in a practical manner using manufacturer's instructions. The applicant should be able to interpret results from various sources and measurements and apply corrective action where appropriate.

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Module 11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)

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Table of Contents
Copyright Notice...................................................................................................................................................2 Knowledge Levels Category A, B1, B2 and C Aircraft Maintenance Licence............................................2
LEVEL 1................................................................................................................................................................................2 LEVEL 2................................................................................................................................................................................2 LEVEL 3................................................................................................................................................................................2

Table of Contents..................................................................................................................................................3 Module 11.4 Enabling Objectives........................................................................................................................4

Module 11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)........................................................................................................................................................6


11.4.1 Air Supply..................................................................................................................................................6
EASA Regulations.................................................................................................................................................................6 Air Supply Sources.................................................................................................................................................................6 Conditioned Air Ground Sources (Low Pressure Supply).....................................................................................................9 Ram Air Systems..................................................................................................................................................................10 Compressor or Blower Systems...........................................................................................................................................11 Engine and APU Bleed Systems..........................................................................................................................................12 Ground Service Connection.................................................................................................................................................14 Flow Control System............................................................................................................................................................15

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Module 11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)

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Module 11.4 Enabling Objectives


Objective Air Supply Sources of air-supply including bleed, APU and ground cart Air Conditioning Air conditioning systems Air cycle and vapour cycle machines Distribution systems Flow, temperature and humidity control system Pressurisation Pressurisation systems Control and indication including control and safety valves Cabin pressure controllers Safety and warning devices Protection and warning devices EASA 66 Reference 11.4.1 11.4.2 Level 2 3

11.4.3

11.4.4

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Module 11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)

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Module 11.4 Air Conditioning and Pressurisation (ATA 21)


11.4.1 Air Supply
EASA Regulations
Certification Specification (CS) 25.831 specifies that each passenger and crew compartment must be supplied with fresh air not less than 0.28 m3/min (10 cubic feet per minute) per crew member, to enable crew members to perform their duties without undue discomfort or fatigue. The air must contain no more than 20,000 parts per million of carbon monoxide, and no more than 0.5% by volume of carbon dioxide during flight. The aeroplane cabin ozone concentration during flight must not exceed 0.25 parts per million by volume above FL 320, and 0.1 parts per million by volume (time-weighted average) during any 3-hour interval above FL270. In the event of a single system failure the ventilation to the cabin should not be less than 0.18 kg/min (0.4 lb/min) and this must be maintained even in the event of the failure of one system.

Air Supply Sources


The air conditioning systems can be supplied with bleed air by different sources. The air supply is often called charge air. The possible sources are: Ram air Compressors or blowers The engines The APU The ground pneumatic sources

ATA Chapter 36 (Pneumatic Systems) deals with bleed air systems and is dealt with further in Section 16 of these EASA Part-66 Study Notes.

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Figure 4.1: Air Conditioning System and Aircraft Cabin Air Supply Sources

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Figure 4.2: Pneumatic System (ATA 36) to Air Conditioning System (ATA 21)

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Conditioned Air Ground Sources (Low Pressure Supply)


If no bleed air is available to operate the air conditioning packs on ground, the aircraft cabin can be supplied via a conditioned air/ground connector from a mobile air conditioning unit or from a fix installed air conditioning ground network, installed at some airports. For conditioned air ground connectors, standard bayonet-type connectors with a diameter of 8 inches are normally used. Air conditioning packs and external air conditioning sources should not supply an aeroplane simultaneously to prevent excessive cabin airflow and possible air conditioning duct damages. In general, external air conditioning sources are more economical and ecological and are preferred.

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Ram Air Systems


This method is used in some small unpressurised aircraft to supply air to either a combustion heater or an exhaust heat exchanger. Typical locations for a ram air intake are the nose of the aircraft or a dorsal fairing at the base of the vertical stabiliser. The air, after circulating through the cabin, is discharged back to atmosphere via a spill vent.

Figure 4.3: Typical Ram Air system (with combustion heater)

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Compressor or Blower Systems


This method is used in some smaller turbo-jets, turboprops and piston engined aircraft. The compressors or blowers are driven by the engine via the accessory drive, gear box or bleed air. Air is drawn in through a ram air intake located in the aircraft nose, engine nacelle fairing or wing leading edge. A filter unit may be provided to protect the blower rotors from ingested debris and to ensure a clean air supply. In order to reduce the level of noise emanating from the blower, silencers are incorporated in the main ducting. The compressor or blower produces excessive air at low altitudes and high engine RPM. Therefore a spill valve and associated control system controls the air mass delivery to the air conditioning system, from the compressor or blower, by spilling overboard any unwanted air. More air is spilled overboard at low altitude and high engine speeds than at high altitude and low engine speeds. Figure 4.4: Ram air inlets in the nose of a DC8

Figure 4.5: Blower system (with displacement type blower)

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Engine and APU Bleed Systems


Air bled from an engine or APU is of the highest pressure of all the systems used, but requires considerable cooling before it can be fed to the cabin for passenger use. See Figure 4.6. A typical pneumatic distribution system (twin engined aircraft) connects air supply sources from the APU, engines, and ground air source to user systems through the pneumatic manifold system and their appropriate control valves. The pneumatic manifold system extends from the engine at one wing to the crossover duct in the air conditioning bay to the other engine at the opposite wing. An electrically actuated isolation valve in the crossover duct separates the left and right side system. The APU bleed air duct is connected to the crossover duct on the left side of the isolation valve and the pneumatic ground service connection is connected to the crossover duct on the right side of the isolation valve. From the engine, bleed air source is ducted primarily from the 5th-stage port where it passes through the 5th-stage non-return-valve before it is ducted together with the 9th-stage (high pressure) duct. Air for nose cowl thermal anti-ice (TAI) is tapped off downstream of the 5thstage non-return-valve. Bleed air from the 9th-stage ports are ducted through the 9th-stage manifold and high stage valve before it is joined together with the 5th-stage duct. The air is then ducted through the Pressure Regulator and Shutoff Valve (PRSOV) to regulate the pressure and the precooler heat exchanger to regulate the temperature before it is discharged into the strut duct. Bleed air source can also be supplied with use of the APU. The APU bleed air duct runs under the passenger floor from the APU along the left side of the aft cargo compartment, then inside the keel beam through the wheel well to the air conditioning bay where it joins the crossover duct on left side of the isolation valve. There are two duct pressure transmitters installed in the crossover duct to monitor duct pressure on either side of the isolation valve. The pneumatic manifold serves as the central reservoir for the supply of pressurized air for air conditioning, hydraulic system pressurization, water tank pressurization and turbofans through their applicable control valves from pressure taps in the pneumatic duct. The pressure regulator and shutoff valve (PRSOV) is a pneumatically actuated, spring loaded closed, butterfly type valve. The valve, in conjunction with a remotely mounted bleed air regulator, provides pneumatic signals to open, close, and regulate pressure for downstream bleed air.

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Figure 4.6: Engine Bleed Air system (B737)

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Ground Service Connection


A pneumatic ground service connection is provided to allow pressurization of the pneumatic manifold by ground service carts. The connection is accessible through a hinged panel on the underside of the fuselage. The pressurized air supplied through this connection can also be used for engine start and other user systems. The connection also includes a non-return-valve to prevent excessive pneumatic system leakage or reverse flow into the ground air source. Before air is supplied, the battery switch must be selected ON and the air conditioning pack valves selected OFF. AC power must be available for air conditioning use. The maximum pressure and temperature of the air supply provided to the ground service connection must not exceed 60 PSI and 450oF, respectively. Ground source should have pressure regulating equipment.

Figure 4.7: Air Conditioning System Ground Connection

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Flow Control System


The flow control system regulates the total cabin air inflow by means of flow control valves. There are different types of flow control valves. But common for all is the fact, that they regulate a specific volumetric airflow independent of the pneumatic supply pressure and the actual cabin pressure. All valves have also an electrical shutoff function and a mechanical close locking device with a visual position indicator. The valves are pneumatically actuated and spring loaded closed without pressure. The open pressure will be discharged to ambient by thermostats in case of pack overheat, to close the valve. In case of electrical power loss the flow control valves will open with pneumatic pressure. Airflow measuring devices (venturi or electronic flow sensor) are mass flow-meters. Therefore it needs a reference signal for the air density (cabin pressure) to regulate a specific volumetric airflow. There are two main types of flow control valves: Flow control valves to regulate a constant airflow and valves to regulate a variable airflow. For fuel saving and passenger comfort, some flow control valves can regulate the flow according to a manually selected or computed flow demand. These valves use a torque motor or stepper motor to adjust the open pressure for the valve. The regulated airflow is inversely proportional to the torque motor current. The computed flow demand may depend on: The number of packs actually in use (if not all packs are in use the remaining packs should provide more airflow). The number of cabin recirculating fans actually in use (if cabin fans are in use, the pack flow should be reduced, to prevent excessive cabin airflow). The selected number of passengers or manual flow selection (with a higher number of passengers onboard, the pack flow should be increased to provide a minimum of fresh air for passenger comfort). The zone temperature cooling demand (if a high cooling demand exists, the pack flow should be increased to provide a faster cabin cool down). The take-off or landing mode (during take-off and landing, the pack flow will be reduced or shut-off to unload the engines). The type of pneumatic source for the air conditioning packs (during APU bleed air supply, the flow control valve is controlled fully open. The pack flow regulation in this case is performed by varying the supply pressure from the APU).

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