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29 Apr 08. The Royal Navy’s new Astute-class submarines will be using Thales UK’s non-hull penetrating, optronic mast. The state-of-the-art electro-optic system will allow greater flexibility in boat design and provide improved surface visibility without giving away the position of the submarine. The optronic mast will be powered by Wind River VxWorks mission-critical real-time operating system (RTOS). The Astute submarines will patrol the world’s oceans with minimum risk of being detected by surface ships and other submarines. It will deploy a number of technologies to reduce its sonar signature; however, submarines are most vulnerable to detection when the submarine commander uses a periscope to assess the situation on the surface. The Thales state-of-the-art optronic mast minimises this risk by deploying a non-hull penetrating design, which enables the Sensor Head Unit (SHU) to be extended from the submarine fin, and rapidly perform a 360 degree scan of the above the surface, enabling the commander to analyse the image data afterwards, minimising risk of detection. The optronic mast will use Wind River VxWorks mission-critical real-time operating system (RTOS) running on Thales quad PowerPC AltiVec™ COTS boards and AdaCore GNAT Pro to power the stabilisation system (high-performance 3 axis to sub-pixel accuracies), video and thermal camera control, communication with the in-hull systems and control all the mechanisms and motors in the SHU. The SHU is a pressure proof, electro-optical assembly that contains high-performance cameras, optics, environmental sensors and stabilisation mechanisms. It is designed to function in temperatures ranging from -15° to +60°c and withstand nearby explosion.
19 May 08. The all-new Sukhoi Superjet 100 made a successful first flight today at Komsomolsk-on-Amur. During its 65 minute flight, the SSJ 100 took off, performed four circuits of the airfield at various altitudes, completed a box pattern and landed successfully. The mission profile, which was carried out in its entirety, included a climb to 1,200 metres. The Russian regional jet was crewed by Alexander Yablontsev, Chief Pilot of Sukhoi Civil Aircraft, with test pilot Leonid Chikunov, both of which confirmed the high thrust-to-weight ratio and the proper operation of the engines and main systems.
20 May 08. LDRA, provider of the most complete automated software verification, source code analysis and test tools covering the full development lifecycle, has enhanced the capabilities of the LDRA tool suite to assist in identifying security vulnerabilities and enforce security standards for development and deployment. LDRA’s adoption in this area demonstrates the company’s commitment to ensure their clients are able to comply fully with the latest security standards and certifications. With the increased dependency on software systems in mission- and safety-critical systems, there has been an increase in the number of attacks. New security vulnerabilities are discovered daily and these cause problems with systems inadequately protected that result in security flaws. Studies indicate that a majority of these vulnerabilities can be traced back to a set of common programming errors. The CERT C Secure Coding Standard provides rules and recommendations for secure coding in the C programming language. The goal of these rules and recommendations is to eliminate insecure coding practices and undefined behaviors that lead to exploitable vulnerabilities. The application of the secure coding standard leads to higher quality systems that are robust and more resistant to attack. Rules and recommendations included in this CERT C Programming Language Secure Coding Standard are designed to be operating system and platform independent. Once established, these standards can be used as a metric to evaluate source code using an automated process. The LDRA tool suite has b