Arnold Engineering Development Center (AEDC) recently began modernizing its turbine engine test facilities as part of its Test Operations Modernization & Integration Project (TOMIP). This new approach is designed to reduce downtime of the facility with the help of a real-time facility model and simulation. The challenge is to apply control system improvements, achieve control room consolidation, and provide operator training for complex test facilities without negatively impacting ongoing test projects. The TOMIP approach has been to target specific subsystems among all the AEDC test cells, rather than focusing on all the subsystems of a specific set of test cells. This makes it possible to minimize downtime and maximize cost savings. For each targeted subsystem, requirements are identified and hardware and software solutions are designed. These solutions are then validated through the use of models and simulations in a development/training area using identical hardware and software. Upon completion of this validation, the hardware is installed in the field and connected to the existing hardware for a complete checkout of the system. This paper discusses the first application in the field of the TOMIP approach with the modernization of specific subsystems for a turbine engine test facility. The real-time model and simulation utilized, the interface systems, and the communication architecture of the overall system are described. The lessons learned through this successful approach, and the potential savings through reduced facility downtime are discussed as well.

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