Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC)

Modelling of Crosstalk in Aerospace Environments

Project summary 

The installation of a large number of electric and electronic systems in cars, aircraft and other transport vehicles requires routing of many wires and cables. Electromagnetic interference between these conductors might result in malfunction of the connected systems. The unintentional electromagnetic coupling between wires is usually referred to as crosstalk and needs to be reduced as much as required. When wires and cables are put closer to each other crosstalk might increase. Simultaneously, the increase of electric and electronic systems in transport vehicles requires the installation of more cables and wires, while the available space remains limited. Therefore, there is a need to reconsider guidelines for routing and harnessing of cables. Knowledge about dependencies of crosstalk on geometric parameters (such as distance between wires and height above a ground plane), frequency and impedances is a prerequisite for such guidelines. Moreover, the introduction of composites such as Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) might have an influence on the crosstalk behaviour and dependencies on model parameters.


There is a trade-off in the modelling of crosstalk. On one hand, situations of increasing complexity have to be modelled, that include different types of cables (i.e. unshielded wire pairs, shielded wires and twisted pairs), as well as composite panels. On the other hand, due to the enormous amount of onboard cables the most complex and accurate simulations may not be most appropriate for simulation and optimization of entire Electrical Wiring Interconnection Systems. The combination of these two challenges will be considered in the current PhD research. The objectives of this PhD are two-fold:

  1. Mathematical methods are presented that result in clear and simple relations between crosstalk and all model parameters in different cable configurations. Simplified crosstalk expressions could for instance be useful for early decisions about routing and segregation of low-risk signals.
  2. Attempts will be made to model differences in crosstalk behaviour when replacing metallic fuselage panels by composite panels, to follow up on recent developments in aircraft industry.

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