Reduced complexity – less space required
The increasing demand for ever-more distinguished and sophisticated comfort and entertainment functions inside the cabin also raises expectations of the equipment and the multitude of associated components; this applies especially to the entire field of power and data cabling.
Each new device inside the cabin increases the cabling requirement and as a consequence, the weight of the plane. Diehl engineers have set themselves the task of achieving equivalent performance with less effort. The idea: A cable that does not need to be installed, costs no money and does not increase the weight. The solution: A powerline that supplies not only power to all connected devices, but also data as a central interface.
In cooperation with the University of Lucerne, Diehl Aerospace has developed Power Line Communications, or PLC. PLC is focused on improved systematization of significant reduction of cabling. Because the need for compact, space-efficient and easy-use solutions is particularly great in aviation.
Irrespective of the use of power or data cables: Cabin PLC technology is designed for maximum simplicity. It is robust, clearly deterministic, RTCA-DO-160-tested and equipped with filter functions, which are able to emit signals that can connect to other networks through PLC transmission. In addition to reduced complexity and optimized space requirement, PLC also sets standards for handling and for reducing consumption. This not only succeeds in reducing the cabling effort by around a third, but the resulting additional operating costs are saved as well.
Visions for the future
We are currently developing new methods to allow for intelligent energy distribution using PLC. We also want to use PLC to revolutionize the passenger service unit. There is enormous hidden potential to reduce complexity. This can significantly reduce the installation effort and also maintenance and retrofitting processes.