Analysing Faults and SFCL Response in Electric Aircraft

Hamoud Alafnan, Xianwu Zeng, Xiaoze Pei, Moanis Khedr, Min Zhang, Weijia Yuan

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Aircraft technology moves towards electrification in order to achieve environmentally friendly goals. However, one of the main challenges facing the electrification of aircraft technology is the weight of the electric devices necessary for operating a fully electric aircraft. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) proposed the use of the superconductive technology in electric aircraft (EA) to overcome this challenge in addition to its other benefits. The proposed EA is called N3-X and it has an on-board DC superconducting network including a superconducting fault current limiter (SFCL). The SFCL is a selfmechanism device that very effectively limits the current within a few milliseconds, thus improving the stability of the system. As the grounding of this network is different from traditional networks, analysing the behaviour of different fault types and how to manage them becomes critical. In this paper, one set of the EA’s systems (one generator, AC/DC rectifier and four motors with their DC/AC variable frequency drives) has been modelled in MATLAB/Simulink environment to carry out the fault analysis and to demonstrate the effect of the SFCL on this network under different types of faults.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Publication statusAcceptance date - 9 Apr 2020
Event14th European Conference on Applied Superconductivity (EUCAS 2019), UK - Scotland, Glasgow, UK United Kingdom
Duration: 1 Sept 20195 Sept 2019


Conference14th European Conference on Applied Superconductivity (EUCAS 2019), UK
Country/TerritoryUK United Kingdom
Internet address


  • Fault Analysis
  • Superconducting Fault Current Limiter (SFCL)
  • Electric aircraft (EA)


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