Sponsored By Oxley Developments
18 Sep 19. Simlat POLARIS UTM Simulation Suite Now Supports AirMap. Simlat’s POLARIS provides simulated UAS traffic at scale, simulating the behavior of “rogue” or malfunctioning UAS while also generating the clutter made by thousands of automated flights. Through integration with Simlat’s POLARIS product, AirMap, the world’s leading airspace management platform for UAS, can provide large-scale UTM simulations using its platform. POLARIS feeds the AirMap environment with background traffic at the right scale, while it creates conditions for specific test cases like flight plan conflict, “rogue”, stray drones, or unplanned changes.
Simlat is a provider of innovative, next-generation training solutions. These training solution systems enable training for any platform, payload and mission. The integrated solution of Simlat with AirMap offers a suite of drone management and flight awareness simulations allowing testing and validating the UTM at various scenarios and for training UTM or other operators with realistic high scale scenarios. POLARIS runs simulated aircraft that follow their preplanned mission but can also detect and avoid, change flight plans and be taken over, either automatically or with a human in the loop.
Simlat technology has been integrated to various Ground Control Stations, autopilots and protocols like MicroPilot, MAVLink, VCSi, MissionPlanner, UgCS, INEXA, and ADS-B to name a few. (Source: UAS VISION)
18 Sep 19. USMC say: Let there be light, for network connectivity. The Marine Corps wants to test using light as a power source for its networks. Li-Fi, as it’s known, uses light as an alternative to wireless connection technology. As part of a pilot program, the service’s Rapid Capabilities Office is experimenting with the technology after receiving a requirement from headquarters Marines Command, Control, Communications, Computers, an official told C4ISRNET, Sept. 17 at Modern Day Marine.
Today’s command operations centers are strewn with equipment and cables. By using the florescent lights in the centers, this could not only make the centers more expeditionary, but also reduce the center’s radio-frequency footprint. This is important because adversaries such as Russia have demonstrated they can use that footprint to geolocate and target with missiles or mortars.
“Combat operation centers, they’re too big, they’re too heavy, they’re too slow. They won’t operate in the weapons engagement zone. So we’re looking at next generation [command operations centers],” said Col. Scott Stebbins, director of the command element information warfare integration division within the capabilities development directorate under the deputy commandant for combat development and integration. Stebbins spoke during a panel at Modern Day Marine. “It’s got to be lighter, faster, better. It’s got to be common hosting environment, virtualization, it’s all about the apps these days.”
The Li-Fi pilot, which should kick off in the next three months, would both reduce the set up and tear down time of command operation centers because there would be less cables, but it would also make the centers more secure from a signature emanation standpoint.
“It’s back to the basics. Sun Tzu, the art of war, military deception, the only thing that’s changed is technology. How do we leverage technology and get back to the basics with military deception and decoys? So we’re working on that as well,” he said.
Stebbins added that the Marines have to be able to manage their signature; technical signature, administrative signature and physical signature.
The Marine Corps official told C4ISRNET that this type of technology could also have more broad implications if Li-Fi technology could be used at traditional, static buildings as well. He added that they expect the results from the pilot to come in no later than September 2020. (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
19 Sep 19. Elmo Motion Control launches extreme power density servo drive for harsh environments. The Gold Triple Bee is part of Elmo’s ExtrIQ line of products designed to withstand extreme environments and can deliver up to 270A of continuous current. Elmo Motion Control, a leading manufacturer of innovative motion control technologies, introduced its newest solution at this year’s Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI). Gold Triple Bee is an extreme power-density servo drive with an ultra-current, designed to drive the world’s most critical missions, where high precision and high reliability are mandatory.
Gold Triple Bee
The new technology is an evolution of the Gold Bee miniature servo drive. Its extreme current capability in a compact form factor makes it ideal for harsh environment applications requiring high power with limited space. This includes applications such as airborne UAVs, heavy-duty drones, turrets and firing stations. As with the rest of the ExtrIQ family of harsh environment products, Gold Triple Bee can operate in temperatures ranging from -40°C to 70°C and withstand mechanical shocks of up to 20g and vibrations of up to 14.6Grms (2kHz). Complying with the strictest safety, EMC, electrical and environmental standards, Gold Triple Bee delivers up to 270A of continuous current and up to 200V (60A). With a ~99% power conversion efficiency, it is ideal for DC or battery operated missions.
Haim Monhait, CEO, said: “Elmo is proud to be a leader in an age where advanced motion technology is driving some of the world’s most critical missions. Whether providing control for a missile winglet, a ground turret or an underwater thruster, our servo performance and minimal form factor play a crucial role. Gold Triple Bee meets this global need ‒ and allows the platform to operate with maximum efficiency and accuracy, even in extremely harsh environments. ExtrIQ technology has been performing day and night for over 25 years in the air, on the ground, and underwater, with over 200,000 drives installed globally.“
17 Sep 19. OSG showcases new-gen ScreeneX technology. Israel-based transparent armour supplier OSG showcased an upgraded variant of its digital ScreeneX display technology at the 2019 Defence and Security Equipment International exhibition (DSEI 2019), held in London from 10 to 13 September. ScreeneX comprises an LCD digital screen that can be integrated into the armoured windscreens and windows OSG supplies to numerous tactical ground vehicles, but its latest iteration now features touchscreen technology. The screen is capable of displaying a variety of data, such as vetronics information, feeds from electro-optical and infrared sensors, command-and-control information, maps, and other graphic overlays.
The main aim of the technology, according to Oren Yaron, marketing director for OSG, is to improve the vehicle crew’s situational awareness with a heads-up display. However, he added that ScreeneX “also gets away from having to have a laptop sitting on your lap”, which can be an encumbrance during a tactical engagement requiring egress from the vehicle. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
18 Sep 19. Green Hills Software, the worldwide leader in high-assurance operating systems, has announced that it is demonstrating its bound multi-processing (BMP) and symmetric multi-processing (SMP) capabilities of the INTEGRITY®-178 Time-Variant Unified Multi-Processing (tuMP™) RTOS for DAL A, B, and C applications at the FACE™ & SOSA™ technical interchange meeting and exposition (Booth #47) in Dayton, Ohio. INTEGRITY-178 tuMP is the only operating system conformant to the FACE Technical Standard edition 3.0 with the capability to execute a DO-178C Level A, B, or C application across multiple processor cores as defined in ARINC 653 Part 1, Supplement 4, Section 2 – “Multiple ARINC 653 processes within a partition scheduled to execute concurrently on different processor cores” (i.e. BMP). INTEGRITY-178 tuMP is also the only RTOS that meets the optional SMP requirement defined in ARINC 653, Part 2, Supplement 3.
Hypervisor offerings claiming support for their unbounded SMP execution environments are commonplace for non-safety critical applications. Although claims of a safety-critical SMP execution environment and ARINC 653 Part 1, Supplement 4 compliance for multicore are often confusing and misleading. Thus system integrators must confront the RTOS or hypervisor supplier directly and ask if their solution supports the execution of a multi-threaded Level A, B or C application on two or more cores, which is a fundamental multicore requirement of Part 1, Supplement 4 as well as the recently released Supplement 5. The obvious question to ask is, does the supplier include a real-time DAL A compliant kernel that is capable of scheduling threads of execution across multiple cores, one that hopefully is also compliant with ARINC 653, Part 1, Supplement 4 or 5. The lack of functional BMP multicore support from other RTOS and hypervisor suppliers could be due to a lack of design support or simply a lack of understanding of the ARINC 653 standard. For example one of the hypervisor suppliers claiming support for Supplement 4 has stated the following: “ARINC 653P1-4 does not include the ability to run an instance of a partition across multiple cores (known as a multicore partition), but states that this capability may be added in a future update of the standard.”
The capability to execute multiple threads of an application across multiple processor cores is critical to achieving optimal performance and flexibility when using multicore processors. Although such solutions are readily available for non-safety-critical operating systems such as Linux, or even Linux in a hypervisor’s virtual machine environment, it is much more challenging for safety-critical applications. As a true Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) multicore operating system with a proven 9-year service history, the INTEGRITY-178 tuMP RTOS was designed from the beginning as a multicore solution for safety and security-critical applications, and it has the capability to run multi-threaded applications at all design assurance levels up to and including Level A.
A second challenge of using multicore processors for safety-critical applications is the inherent contention from multiple cores trying to access a given shared resource, such as memory or I/O. Certification authorities have emphasised their concerns about such interference by including objectives for interference identification, mitigation, and verification in the CAST-32A position paper. Whereas most RTOS and hypervisor offerings leave multicore interference mitigations as an exercise for the system integrator, INTEGRITY-178 tuMP includes a fully capable multicore scheduler, and a bandwidth allocation and management capability, called BAM, to control and monitor shared processor resource access. The supported bandwidth management technique emulates a high-rate hardware-based approach to ensure continuous allocation enforcement. These capabilities greatly lower integration and certification risk, while also enabling the integrator to manage significant software retest costs that would occur when a software application changes or is added. An architecture based on multicore processors can only be considered an IMA system if the integrator or sustainment operation can easily mitigate and control multicore interference as new software functionality is added to the system or existing applications are updated, which is the basic premise behind IMA.
INTEGRITY-178 tuMP is the only commercial multicore operating system capable of hosting Multi-Level Security (MLS) applications within its secure MILS partitions, without restricting the MLS application (such as a high assurance guard or downgrader) to a bare-metal execution environment. INTEGRITY-178 tuMP is also the only commercial multicore operating system able to guarantee and enforce a Cross Domain Solution’s (CDS) information flows. INTEGRITY-178 tuMP MLS and CDS capabilities are backed by a comprehensive and massive set of security assurance evidence that is aligned with the NSA High-Robustness and the Common Criteria’s EAL 6+ assurance requirements. When an RTOS supplier claims that their solution can meet MLS or CDS assurance requirements, such claims should be thoroughly scrutinised by conducting a deep-dive audit into their functional security capabilities and corresponding software assurance evidence. After all, while it is easy to claim a high level of security, unproven claims will not prevent rogue applications or malicious actors from compromising the system.
18 Sep 19. HENSOLDT develops mission computer for Airbus Helicopters. Further developing the computer will give the NH90 new capabilities. The leading, independent sensor house HENSOLDT has been commissioned by Airbus Helicopters to provide the EuroGrid Tactical Mission Computer (ETMC) for helicopters with new functions. The two-year further development contract includes a guarantee for the acquisition of 200 production units in the subsequent years.
The new ETMC generation, ETMC-NG, will be based on the computer which HENSOLDT has delivered for a long time to Airbus Helicopters for integration into the NH90, Tiger and CH-53 helicopters. Based on the experience gained during their many years of cooperation, HENSOLDT has defined the follow-up model, ETMC-NG, together with Airbus Helicopters and has launched the process to develop this system.
Apart from the elimination of obsolete characteristics, the new model will have more computing power, higher storage capacity for future system extensions and new interfaces. For example, a new function for identifying ships and boats will be incorporated, which will allow the relevant data from the crew to be shown in the ETMC-NG display and to be used for mission planning, border surveillance or maritime search and rescue operations.
17 Sep 19. Agile software, flying cars top USAF acquisition priorities. The USAF has flying cars — and agile software — on its mind.
Will Roper, the Air Force’s acquisition head is pushing for a new flying car project with the Air Force Research Laboratory called Agility Prime — an idea he’s been “socializing” with the White House and inside DOD.
The program, which is set to start later this year, will have a “spectrum of options” to address various problems and will include smaller vehicles, special aviators, and addressing logistics challenges, such as moving meals, ammo and weapons.
But besides developing sci-fi worthy tech, the Roper hopes the program gets acquisition professionals to think outside the requirements box and more about how to fit in with the U.S. commercial space, Roper told reporters during the Air Force Association’s Air, Space Cyber Conference Sept. 16.
The Air Force now has 31 software factories, including the popular Kessel Run unit, and Roper said the growth is proof the agile software development strategy is essential. That’s particularly true with ALIS, the Air Force’s Autonomic Logistics Information System, which puts F-35 maintainers with Kessel Run coders to comprise what’s known as the Mad Hatter software unit.
“I think that the Mad Hatter initiative has definitely demonstrated to the point of victory that you’ve got to do agile software — there’s no choice,” Roper told reporters.
Roper said the Air Force will make an update regarding the future of ALIS and Mad Hatter partnership in the next four to six weeks, including whether they will continue to be separate entities.
Roper, who has been a huge proponent of rapid prototyping, harped on the possibilities of the combination of existing technologies and concepts that he dubbed a “digital holy trinity” — agile software, open architecture and digital engineering.
“I’ve looked at a lot of technologies in defense and I’ve seen some amazing things,” Roper said. “Nothing has been as exciting to me as this confluence of agile software and open architecture and digital engineering — nothing.”
Roper said the trinity is “the first thing I’ve seen that looks like a better spear-making process, much faster, much more agile.”
Being able to digitally design and plan sustainment for aircraft or satellites that don’t yet exist, he said, will translate to faster modernization and acquisition practices. Roper was talking big picture and futuristically and did say it will take time before he has a more solid example he can walk through. But while results won’t be imminent, he said they will be worth the risk.
“We’re down to two maybe three companies that can build a high-performance tactical aircraft,” Roper said, “So if we don’t change the dynamics of our programs, we’re in danger of collapsing from two to one.” (Source: Defense Systems)
17 Sep 19. Wind River®, a leader in delivering software to critical infrastructure, today announced that Wind River Helix™ Virtualization Platform has achieved conformance to the latest Future Airborne Capability Environment™ (FACE™) Technical Standard, Edition 3.0. The certification establishes Helix Platform conformance as an Operating System Segment (OSS) that supports the Safety Base and Security Profile.
“A member of The Open Group FACE™ Consortium since its inception and first to achieve conformance to the FACE Technical Standard OSS Safety Base Profile in 2017, this achievement further demonstrates Wind River’s ongoing work promoting innovation and rapid integration of portable capabilities across global defense programs,” said Ray Petty, vice president, aerospace and defense, Wind River. “With nearly four decades of experience helping companies build safe, secure, and reliable computing systems, Wind River is committed to enhancing and bringing new capabilities to our portfolio for mission-critical commercial aircraft and military operations.”
Based on the award-winning VxWorks 653 technology foundation, which is also FACE conformant, Helix Platform is an adaptive software development environment for aerospace systems that enables support for multiple applications. It supports robust partitioning, symmetric multiprocessing (SMP), and RTCA DO-297 Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) considerations to reduce safety certification costs and accelerate time to deployment. It includes POSIX and ARINC 653 support, including ARINC 653 Part 1 Supplement 4 and Supplement 5, with commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) RTCA DO-178C DAL A certification evidence available. Helix Platform provides a real-time, embedded, Type 1 hypervisor that runs on Arm® or x86 multi-core processors. Applications can be legacy or implement new capability, based on industry standards such as the FACE™ Technical Standard, or on operating systems such as Linux, VxWorks®, and others.
Software conformant with the FACE Technical Standard can be used—and most importantly, easily reused—by suppliers and integrators of avionics systems across different global defense programs and aircraft. With FACE conformance, Helix Platform now helps manufacturers and military services lower procurement costs, as well as avoid and prevent supplier lock-in. Additionally, it enables manufacturers to easily and rapidly integrate ARINC 653 and POSIX® applications software with other FACE portable software components.
“I am very pleased to congratulate Wind River on achieving FACE Conformance for their Helix Platform”, said Judy Cerenzia, The Open Group Director of Forum Operations. “This latest addition further populates the FACE Registry with the best-in-class solutions for our global warfighters and next-generation military platforms.”
Wind River worked with its FACE verification authority, TES-SAVI, to complete the rigorous FACE certification conformance testing for Helix Platform. The company has a rich heritage of certified platforms used as standard COTS components providing great flexibility and capabilities for the future of IMA systems.
16 Sep 19. Systematic previews improvements to dismounted, maritime SitaWare software. Systematic is developing a new version of SitaWare Edge, the dismounted version of its SitaWare command-and-control software suite, and it provided an early sight of some of these at the 2019 Defence and Security Equipment International exhibition (DSEI 2019) in London in September. Systematic representatives told Jane’s the philosophy underpinning the developments was to achieve a common look and feel across the software’s three versions, which include SitaWare Frontline, intended for use in vehicles, and SitaWare Headquarters (HQ), designed principally for static command posts.
Edge now has the Systematic proprietary mapping engine used in HQ. A benefit of this, according to company representatives, is the provision of the same 3D mapping that is available in HQ, which was a specific request from users, although this is currently only available as a viewer (planning still has to be conducted using the 2D map).
The user interface of the new version, which is Edge 2.0, will have the same look and feel as that of Frontline and HQ. The screen has been kept clear of icons and menus, with these now accessible from a sidebar menu accessed via a single button, but with the same full symbol support as the other two modules.
The chat function, previously a separate application, has been integrated, as had already been achieved with HQ and Frontline, again in response to customer requests. The software is device responsive and will automatically adjust to fit the screen of any Android device. The company representative said these developments were at the prototype stage, and there were additional developments that would be added into Edge 2.0 before the software was ready for fielding, which will be in mid-2020. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
17 Sep 19. Lockheed Martin and USAF conduct multi-domain operations test. Lockheed Martin and the US Air Force have demonstrated the capability to connect an F-35 fighter jet and a U-2 reconnaissance aircraft to enable multi-domain operations. The test also involved a multi-domain ground station and allowed the company and the USAF to showcase the ability to distribute sensitive information across multiple platforms. Lockheed Martin Skunk Works conducted the test in coordination with the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts.
The demonstration was codenamed Project Riot and positioned the F-35 fighter as a key element in the joint force. It also showcased the ability of U-2 to rapidly field capabilities for the future.
During the test, an F-35 aircraft detected a long-range missile launch and passed on the information through the U-2 to a ground station.
The information assisted the air defence commander on the ground to take a quick call to counter the missile threat.
The connectivity will provide the US military with a significant capability to act on the data and target the threats in a matter of seconds.
Lockheed Martin Skunk WorksISR & UASvice-president John Clark said: “This demonstration continues our commitment to provide complete battlespace awareness and seamless interoperability to enable multi-domain operations.
“With its long-range standoff sensors, on-board processing and ability to operate in and around contested environments, the U-2 continues to play a critical role in demonstrating new capabilities today, while transforming operations for tomorrow’s battlespace.”
The team’s achievements include a successful demonstration of the ability to use F-35 sensor data for defence against missile threats, and using the upgraded U-2 to facilitate beyond line of sight communications between the F-35 aircraft and a ground-based multi-domain station.
The team also established two new data paths to ensure secure transmission of the sensor data to the troop.
Lockheed Martin F-35 programme vice-president and general manager Greg Ulmer said: “The F-35, with its advanced sensors and connectivity, is able to gather and seamlessly share critical information enabling the joint force to be safer and more effective.
“No other fighter jet in the world has this capability, and this test was a critical step on the path to unlocking its full potential for multi-domain operations.”
In June, the F-35 transmitted data to the US Army’s Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System during a test. (Source: airforce-technology.com)
16 Sep 19. A Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) team recently conducted a rapid set up demonstration of a land-based expeditionary version of its Joint Precision Approach and Landing System to a group of global military officials at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, MD.
JPALS is a GPS-based precision landing system that guides aircraft to precision landings in all weather and surfaces conditions.
“The entire system was fully operational in 70 minutes on Day One and 50 minutes on Day Two,” said Matt Gilligan, vice president at Raytheon’s Intelligence, Information and Services business. “Raytheon is offering the U.S. and its allies fast and accurate precision landing systems that support operations from bare-base locations.”
During the demonstration, military officials from all four services, as well as representatives from Japan, United Kingdom, The Netherlands, and Italy, watched multiple F-35Cs land on the same designated runway landing point every time over the course of six different approaches.
This was the second proof-of-concept event in 2019 showing how F-35s can use a reconfigured mobile version of JPALS to support landings in austere environments.
16 Sep 19. LDRA Launches Industry-First Tool Suites for Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE) Conformance and Software Quality.
LDRA FACE™ Conformance Tool Suites facilitate and reduce the cost of developing and verifying FACE-conformant software while also improving software quality through software lifecycle traceability, automated code analysis, and software verification. With the latest release of the LDRA tool suite, LDRA delivers industry-first FACE Conformance Tool Suites, enabling cost-effective development and verification of high-assurance, FACE-conformant software. These new software tool suites uniquely automate the process of evaluating software for conformance with each version of the released FACE standard (e.g., version 2.1.1 and 3.0), while at the same time enabling developers to improve the quality of their software through traceability, static and dynamic code analysis, and unit and system-level testing.
LDRA is uniquely positioned to provide these capabilities to the aerospace and defense community. The company and its products have been used successfully in critical embedded software development for over 40 years, and nearly 100 programs requiring DO-178 B/C Level A assurance rely on LDRA tools. LDRA is a contributing participant to the FACE Committee Technical Working Group and Outreach Group and holds leadership roles in the DO-178 Committees, MISRA C and MISRA C++ Committees, and the working group for secure annex to the C language definition. In addition, the LDRA Certification Services Team provides certification support services (DER, Training, Consulting).
As a contributor to The Open Group FACE™ Consortium and the FACE Technical Standard, LDRA provides software tools and decades of experience that help military customers ensure FACE conformance and thereby achieve the FACE objectives of reducing lifecycle costs and time-to-field interoperable avionics systems on varying platforms.
LDRA Conformance Tool Suites for FACE V2.1.1 and V3.0 include these new capabilities:
- Integration of the 2.1.1 and 3.0 FACE Conformance Verification Matrix (CVM) into the LDRA tool suite
- FACE conformance workflow management
- Test management of the FACE coding standard and low-level test of pertinent FACE requirements
- Ability to address any of the FACE segments from the CVM
- Objective traceability from FACE architectural segments (e.g., IOSS, OSS, PCS, PSSS, TSS)
- Automated analysis of FACE requirements conformance through static code analysis
- Invocation and results capture of the 2.1.1 and 3.0 FACE Conformance Test Suite (CTS) for submission to FACE Verification Authorities
- Automatic documentation generation of FACE verification evidence
- Static and dynamic code analysis as well as automated test case generation, execution, and results capture, including structural coverage
“Driven by our customers, we are excited to be in this unique position of being able to provide high-assurance software tools for functional-safety and security standards compliance as well as FACE conformance program initiatives,” said Ian Hennell, Operations Director, LDRA. “These objectives and our technologies are completely complementary to our offerings pertaining to airworthiness under DO-178B/C, and we believe our customers will realize significant cost savings and time-to-market results for these FACE programs.”
The LDRA FACE Conformance Tool Suites are available now with the latest version of the LDRA tool suite (version 9.8.1). Contact email@example.com for more information or register for a free 30-day trial of the LDRA FACE v3.0 Conformance Tool Suite.
16 Sep 19. Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) Skunk Works®, the Missile Defense Agency and the U.S. Air Force successfully connected an F-35, U-2 and a multi-domain ground station in a ground-breaking test demonstrating multi-domain operations and the secure distribution of sensitive information across multiple platforms.
During the demonstration, called Project Riot, an F-35 detected a long-range missile launch with its onboard sensors and shared the information through the U-2 to the air defense commander on the ground, enabling the commander to quickly make the decision to target the threat. This next-level connectivity reduces the data-to-decision timeline from minutes to seconds, which is critical in fighting today’s adversaries and advanced threats.
In partnership with the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts, and the Missile Defense Agency, Skunk Works’ Project Riot builds on a series of open systems architecture demonstrations proving how incremental increases in capability can be rapidly fielded to enable a connected network across air, ground, sea, space and cyber domains.
“This demonstration continues our commitment to provide complete battlespace awareness and seamless interoperability to enable multi-domain operations,” said John Clark, vice president of ISR & UAS at Lockheed Martin Skunk Works. “With its long-range standoff sensors, on-board processing and ability to operate in and around contested environments, the U-2 continues to play a critical role in demonstrating new capabilities today, while transforming operations for tomorrow’s battlespace.”
Leveraging common industry standards to drive down cost and shorten schedules, the team achieved four mission critical data points in less than four months:
- Demonstrated the ability to leverage F-35 sensor data for missile defense
- Leveraged the modernized U-2’s extensive payload capacity, modular design and open architecture to provide beyond line of sight communications between the F-35 and a multi-domain ground station
- Established two new data paths to securely transmit 5th generation sensor data at multiple levels of security to the warfighter, enabling a multi-domain network of legacy and 5th generation systems
- Disseminated 5th generation data using the Air Force’s Universal Command and Control Interface and Open Mission Systems standards for faster capability deployment and seamless connection between systems
“The F-35, with its advanced sensors and connectivity, is able to gather and seamlessly share critical information enabling the joint force to be safer and more effective,” said Greg Ulmer, Lockheed Martin vice president and general manager for the F-35 program. “No other fighter jet in the world has this capability – and this test was a critical step on the path to unlocking its full potential for multi-domain operations.”
This demonstration builds on successful flight tests completed since 2013 that establish the foundation for a distributed, systems-of-systems architecture in the not-too-distant future.
15 Sep 19. Elbit confirmed as large-area display cockpit supplier for Boeing-Saab T-X trainer. Elbit Systems of America has confirmed that it is providing the large-area display (LAD) cockpit and other items for the Boeing-Saab T-X trainer. The announcement on 16 September notes that the US-based subsidiary of Israel’s Elbit Systems will provide the LAD to be fitted in the front and rear cockpits, datalinks, and other embedded training capabilities.
“Elbit Systems of America will provide a number of key components including: large-area displays, engine fuel indicators, upfront control panels, and head-up displays and their associated line replaceable units. In addition, the company will supply air and ground datalinks enabling the T-X’s onboard virtual avionics and the Integrated Live/Virtual/Constructive capability. This capability simulates the advanced avionics, sensors and weapons utilised by fifth-generation fighter aircraft such as the F-22 and F-35, enabling T-X pilots to virtually operate those systems while flying the lower cost-to-operate T-X aircraft,” Elbit said in a statement.
Speaking to Jane’s and other defence media in June, Boeing’s Ted Torgerson, programme head for the T-X Advanced Pilot Training Program (ATP), noted that the LAD is the same as that developed for the company’s Advanced Eagle and Super Hornet Block 3 combat aircraft.
“We have worked collaboratively with our friends on the F-15 and F/A-18 on the [Advanced Cockpit System] ACS. They led the charge to start development, and we then picked it up and were the first to fly the cockpit,” he said, referring to the maiden flight of the first of two Projection Representative Jets (PRJs) in December 2016. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
15 Sep 19. Textron offers Synturian control technology to US Air Force for MUM-T. Key Points:
- Textron Aviation Defense is offering its Synturian C2 point-and-click software interface to the US Air Force
- Synturian can be used to control UAVs as part of the manned-unmanned teaming, which the USAF is experimenting with
Textron Aviation Defense is offering its Synturian control and collaboration technology to the US Air Force (USAF) as the service experiments with manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T) capabilities.
Brett Pierson, Textron Aviation Defense vice-president for light attack aircraft and Scorpion, told Jane’s on 6 September that Synturian is a computer programme with a point-and-click interface that can command-and-control (C2) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) from any laptop computer. Traditional aircraft control interfaces, he said, require a stick and a throttle.
According to Pierson, Synturian displays a window that pops up that tells the user which vehicles in the vicinity can be controlled. He said this is much like how a cellphone user walks into a new building and has their phone automatically detect which wireless internet signals are available for connection. Pierson said a user can then simply choose from a yes or no command prompt on whether to take control of a nearby aircraft.
Pierson said Textron Aviation Defense simulated a Nightwarden tactical UAV and an Aerosonde small unmanned aerial system (sUAS) in a mid-2018 demo. This demonstration also featured flight acquisition and control of the simulated air vehicle and sensors.
Using Synturian, the Scorpion air crew can set up flight route waypoints, establish surveillance orbits, steer the sensor, and change the unmanned aircraft heading, airspeed, and altitude. The simulated UAVs were then able to operate without further aircrew interaction, according to a company statement. Pierson said the company considered this a successful test because Synturian was commanding and controlling another aircraft, and was receiving, upon command, real-time video imagery from a FLIR camera on one of the UAVs. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
16 Sep 19. CSIRO partnership to develop next-gen lithium battery tech. Australia’s national science agency CSIRO and Japanese specialist chemical manufacturer Piotrek have partnered to commercialise Australian-developed battery technology that features high energy capacity and lower fire risk, providing applications for space exploration and defence. That has potential application everywhere lithium batteries are now used, from space to portable electronic devices, drones and electric cars.
CSIRO and Piotrek have partnered to develop the next generation of solid polymer electrolytes (SPEs) for lithium batteries using CSIRO’s proprietary RAFT (Reversible Addition-Fragmentation chain Transfer) polymer technology and Piotrek’s ion conducting polymers (ICP).
Piotrek general manager Ihei Sada said combining the CSIRO SPE with Piotrek ICP will give his company a big market advantage.
“This partnership will help Piotrek make our batteries safer and more efficient, and with our industry reach, we will get our advanced batteries to the market faster,” he said.
“Together we will develop the world’s safest, longer life solid state high energy battery.”
Solid state batteries are a class of lithium batteries that typically use a lithium metal anode, the highest specific energy of all battery anodes.
That will enable next-generation batteries with twice as much energy as current lithium battery technologies. There are no volatile or flammable liquids inside a solid state battery to catch fire at low temperatures if the cell is damaged.
CSIRO battery research leader Dr Adam Best said that with several companies already active in this field, solid state battery enabled devices could be on the market by 2025, if not sooner.
“Our RAFT technology allows us to tune our SPEs’ properties to expand their versatility for different types of batteries and fuel cells and will also significantly reduce the cost of device assembly and manufacture,” he said.
CSIRO’s Dr John Chiefari is a co-inventor and co-developer of the RAFT polymer technology, and worked with Professor Maria Forsyth and Professor Patrick Howlett from Deakin University’s BatTri Hub to develop the SPEs.
Dr Chiefari said the exciting collaboration with Piotrek will bring together battery technologies from both organisations to fast track development of an SPE for use in high energy (4.5-5V) lithium batteries for electric vehicles and drones.
“By developing and exploiting disruptive technology platforms, we’re supporting the creation of new businesses and industries for Australia and the world,” he said.
“This development will underpin the growth of high energy batteries for the electric vehicle market.” (Source: Space Connect)
Oxley Group Ltd
Oxley specialises in the design and manufacture of advanced electronic and electro-optic components and systems for air, land and sea applications within the military sector. Established in 1942, Oxley has manufacturing facilities in the UK and USA and enjoys representation worldwide. The company’s products include night vision and LED lighting, data capture systems and electronic components. Oxley has pioneered the development of night vision compatible lighting. It offers a total package incorporating optical filters, equipment modification, cockpit and external lighting along with fleet wide upgrade services including engineering, installation, support, maintenance and training. The company’s long experience of manufacturing night vision lighting and LED indicators, coupled with advances in LED technology, has enabled it to develop LED solutions to replace incandescent and fluorescent lighting in existing applications as well as becoming the lighting option of choice in new applications such as portable military hospitals, UAV control stations and communication shelters.