In this paper, an approach to detect and isolate the aircraft sensor/actuator Faults affecting the mean of the Kalman filter innovation sequence is presented. The effects of the sensor and actuator faults in the innovation process of the channels are investigated, and a decision approach to isolate the sensor and actuator faults is proposed. When a Kalman filter is used, the decision statistics change regardless of whether the fault is in the sensors or in the actuators, whilst when a Robust Kalman Filter (RKF) is used, it is easy to distinguish the sensor and actuator faults. A novel feature of this diagnostic method is that the innovation sequence based fault isolation algorithm has been presented and hence, the sensor/actuator fault detection and isolation problem has been solved. The categories (or classes) of the likely faults are not demanded. The statistical characteristics of the system are not required to be known after the fault has occurred. In the simulations, the longitudinal dynamics of an aircraft control system are considered, and the detection and isolation of pitch rate gyro faults and actuator faults affecting the mean of the innovation sequence are examined. (C) 2000 Editions scientifiques et medicales Elsevier SAS.