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27 Jan 21. Software Modernization Means Moving Faster, Smarter. Software modernization is about delivering better software at a much greater speed to the warfighters, the Defense Department’s acting director, chief information officer said.
Danielle Metz provided a keynote address today from the Pentagon via remote video to Federal Computer Week’s Cloud Security and Services Workshop.
The goal, she said, is to increase technological capabilities across the department and strengthen overall adoption of enterprise systems to expand the competitive space in the cyber domain, as outlined in the Digital Modernization Strategy, which is a cornerstone of the National Defense Strategy.
That is achieved through innovation, resilient cybersecurity and cultivation of talent, she added.
Metz spoke about the great power competition with Russia and China and how it relates to cyberspace and other domains: “We can’t always count on having the newest capability or the greatest capacity in our forces. We must identify new advantages of our near-peer adversaries, and how we operate as a cohesive, integrated joint force. The Digital Modernization Strategy is the pursuit of new sources of advantage in future conflicts.
“Lots of the traditional advantages that DOD has enjoyed are being eroded and will continue to erode over the next 10 years, we need to look for new sources of advantage,” Metz continued.
The way the department develops and deploys software production systems is a source of new advantage, she said. This source is the bedrock of the department’s software modernization strategy.
The challenge, according to a recent DOD report, is recruiting, retaining, managing and developing a robust software workforce.
“There are two major institutional and cultural challenges that we are tackling: the rapid delivery of small amounts of capability into production, and transforming the processes to focus on software delivery, instead of hardware platforms,” she said.
The first cultural challenge is the rapid delivery of small amounts of capability into production. This is now common practice in the commercial software development industry. Current industry wisdom is to adopt a dev ops [development of information technology operations], or dev sec ops [referring to cybersecurity] model, delivering a minimum viable product, she said.
Dev ops, or development of information technology operations, has to do with the goal of increasing the speed of software delivery by enabling continuous collaboration, communication, automation and integration. Dev sec ops is a shortcut for dev ops, with the added “sec” referring to cybersecurity.
The second cultural challenge is that nearly all of the processes in the department push back on the idea of rapid delivery of small amounts of capability into production, she said. These processes have been refined throughout the decades of building big hardware-intensive weapons platforms.
However, not everything that a department delivers is an aircraft carrier or a bomber or satellite constellation, Metz said.
The way the department budgets, does acquisitions and build requirements, all need to be transformed in order to deliver more agility, she said.
“We are actively improving those business processes and changing the conversation [about] how we deliver software. There is good work going on in every area,” Metz said. (Source: US DoD)
27 Jan 21. GKN Aerospace leads development of ground-breaking hydrogen propulsion system for aircraft.
- £54m collaborative H2GEAR programme to push hydrogen technology and accelerate aerospace decarbonisation to zero emissions
- Public-private investment and collaboration aims to create more than 3,000 UK roles
- Entry-into-service of hydrogen-powered aircraft could be as early as 2026
- Project maintains GKN Aerospace’s position at forefront of next generation of sustainable aircraft technology
GKN Aerospace will lead a ground-breaking UK collaboration programme, called H2GEAR, to develop the company’s first hydrogen propulsion system for sub-regional aircraft. Hydrogen is expected to play a key role in the decarbonisation strategy of aviation as it can power aircraft efficiently, leaving water as the only by-product. H2GEAR puts GKN Aerospace at the heart of the technology developments needed for the future of more sustainable aviation. The technology will first focus on significantly improving sub-regional aircraft hydrogen powered performance, in turn enabling applications on larger aircraft and longer journeys. The programme is supported by £27M of ATI funding, matched by GKN Aerospace and its industrial partners.
H2GEAR aims to develop a liquid hydrogen propulsion system for sub-regional aircraft that could be scaled up to larger aircraft. Liquid hydrogen is being converted to electricity within a fuel cell system. This electricity efficiently powers the aircraft, eliminating CO2 emissions. This would create a new generation of clean air travel, eliminating harmful CO2 emissions.
H2GEAR will reinforce the UK’s position at the forefront of aerospace technology research and development. GKN Aerospace will collaborate with Intelligent Energy, Aeristech, Newcastle University, The University of Manchester and University of Birmingham, throughout the programme, aiming to create more than 3,000 jobs in the next decade. The programme will be delivered from GKN Aerospace’s Global Technology Centre in Bristol, the company’s £32M brand-new collaborative space for research and development.
Russ Dunn, Chief Technology Officer for GKN Aerospace, said: “Hydrogen-powered aircraft offer a clear route to keep the world connected, with dramatically cleaner skies. The UK is at the forefront of this technology, and the H2GEAR project is an example of industry, academia and Government collaboration at its best. Working with our partners, and made possible by Government investment, GKN Aerospace will develop and industrialise the breakthrough technology to fly aircraft with zero CO2 emissions by the mid-2020s. This will not only create thousands of jobs, but it will keep the UK at the forefront of the next generation of cleaner air travel for decades to come.”
GKN Aerospace will use its long term experience and in-depth knowledge of electrical power systems and propulsion technology to accelerate the development of technology. The entry-into- service of the first hydrogen-powered aircraft could be as early as 2026.
27 Jan 21. £84m boost for technology to power a green aviation revolution.
New grants for groundbreaking aerospace projects to help the industry build back greener.
- Green technology which could one day be used for taxi-like aircraft is set to revolutionise the aviation industry, with potential for zero-emissions air travel by 2023
- £84.6m invested by government and industry in 3 ambitious aerospace projects based in Bedford, Bristol, and Cranfield
- projects will help the industry to build back better and greener, and have the potential to unlock up to 4,750 jobs across the UK
Nearly 5,000 jobs could be secured in making the UK’s aviation sector greener, thanks to a multi-m-pound boost for 3 pioneering research and development projects announced today (Thursday 28 January) by Business Minister Paul Scully.
The winning projects represent a total investment of £84.6m – half from the government, delivered through the ATI Programme, and matched by industry.
Each of the 3 projects will use British innovation and expertise in green technology to power zero-emissions flights, using alternative energy sources of hydrogen or electricity to reduce the industry’s reliance on polluting fossil fuels.
From Bristol to Coventry and Cranfield to Orkney, these projects could help secure up to 4,750 design, engineering and manufacturing jobs.
Not only could this technology enable passengers to travel abroad in a greener fashion, in future it could enable the skies to be used for travelling much shorter journeys, similar to a local taxi service, reducing congestion on road networks, and allowing passengers to travel more quickly and locally.
Innovative aerospace technology is rapidly developing, meaning that there is the potential for zero-emissions flights to be a reality as early as the end of 2023.
Minister for Business, Paul Scully, said, “These trailblazing projects are broadening the horizons of future air travel, towards a greener future where we may be able to hail taxis from the sky rather than on our streets. This multi-m-pound boost will help to secure up to 4,750 jobs in these projects spanning the UK, and could pave the way to technological advances that will allow the industry to build back better and greener following the COVID-19 pandemic – and help tackle climate change.”
The following three projects are receiving funding:
- GKN Aerospace-led project H2GEAR will receive a £27.2m government grant to develop an innovative liquid hydrogen propulsion system (a component that propels the aircraft forward) for regional air travel, which could be scaled up for larger aircraft and longer journeys
- ZeroAvia’s HyFlyer II will receive a £12.3m government grant to scale up its zero-emissions engines for demonstration on a 19-seater aircraft, showcasing its significant technological advances, meaning that customers can expect to fly on zero-emissions aircraft as early as the end of 2023
- InCEPTion, led by Blue Bear Systems Research, is receiving a £2.8m government grant to develop a fully-electrified zero-emissions propulsion system for aircraft, that is powerful, quiet and efficient and could be used for smaller aircraft travelling short distances – even within the same city
The government is committed to helping advance the UK’s future transport system through its extensive R&D Roadmap and to increase R&D public spending to £22 bn per year by 2024/2025. This investment comes ahead of our consultation on the Aviation Decarbonisation Strategy this year, set out as part of the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan for a green industrial revolution, with jet zero and low carbon aviation as a key pillar to building back greener.
The announcement of today’s grant winners is the latest in government support for the aerospace sector. It forms part of a wider £3.9bn government-industry investment in aerospace research and development projects from 2013 to 2026 through the Aerospace Growth Partnership and delivered through the ATI Programme.
During the pandemic, aerospace companies have been able to benefit from the government’s extensive business support measures including furlough, CBILs, and Bounce Back loans. The aerospace sector and its aviation customers are being supported with almost £11bn made available through loan guarantees, support for exporters, the Bank of England’s COVID Corporate Financing Facility and grants for research and development. (Source: https://www.gov.uk/)
27 Jan 21. uAvionix Enters the Defense UAV Market with IFF Solutions. uAvionix, a supplier of certified and miniaturized communications, navigation, and surveillance (CNS) avionics, announced that it has been investing in the development and certification of a full lineup of Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) solutions for the small, tactical, and attritable Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) defense platforms.
Incorporation of IFF technology into these platforms allows them full participation into the cross-troop, cross-service branch, and cross-nation collaboration and situational awareness that prevents fratricide.
The full product lineup consists of two different micro IFF transponders, a certified GPS, a passive IFF receiver, a tactical display system, and a crypto appliqué emulator which allows for non-classified testing and demonstration. The IFF transponders are in certification testing with the Department of Defense (DoD) Air Traffic Control Radar Beacon System Identification Friend or Foe Program Office (AIMS PO), with the first Mark XIIB certification expected certification in Q1 2021.
Development and certification efforts are the results of internal IR&D funding as well as Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) sponsorship from the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy in partnership with R Cubed Engineering (R3E) as the prime SBIR contract holder.
uAvionix currently holds 15 FAA TSO and STC certifications with an additional 4 pending approval in the FAA Aircraft Certification Office (ACO). The combination of this certification credibility and innovation in product capability and low Size, Weight, and Power Consumption (SWaP) propel uAvionix to the leadership role in civil and defense UAV avionics.
“AIMS certified Mode V micro IFF transponders are a game changer for small and attritable remotely piloted aircraft. Without Mode V IFF, our own swarms of small UAVs will cause more confusion and fratricide on our side than the enemy will cause with their UAV fleet. Mode V on small UAVs wasn’t possible until now. They are now a “must have” and “can equip” for nearly anything that can fly.”
Maj Gen, USAF (ret) James Poss, founder of ASSURE – the FAA’s Drone Research Center of Excellence.
uAvionix recently published an article in Military Embedded Systems regarding micro IFF systems for tactical UAV use.
The RT-2087/ZPX-B is the lowest-SWaP offering for tactical UAVs (Groups 2-4). At only 53-grams, ZPX-B is the smallest and most power-efficient IFF system at an impressive one-third the volume and one-fourth of the power consumption of the competitive micro IFF solution. While transmitting at 54dBm, ZPX-B provides civil transponder Modes A, C, S, and ADS-B Out, as well as military Modes 1,2,3, and 5 levels 1 and 2. This capability provides the host aircraft with the capability to operate seamlessly on both the battlefield and in National Airspace Systems (NAS). The ZPX-B can leverage the host GPS and pressure altitude data through the control interface, or take inputs from a compatible GPS such as the uAvionix TSO-C145e truFYX and aircraft pitot-static system.
For larger aircraft in Groups 3-5, the RT-2087/ZPX-C adds to the core capability of ZPX-B by incorporating two antennas for diversity, an additional 3dBm of transmit power, ADS-B IN and Mode 5 IN capability for Detect and Avoid (DAA) functionality, a native Ethernet interface, and native Open Mission Systems (OMS) compatibility. The ZPX-C can also leverage the host GPS and altitude data through the control interface, or be paired with the purpose-built ZPX-G GPS receiver. The ZPX-C satisfies AIMS requirements for manned aircraft as well, and pairs with the AV-30M tactical control head and traffic display for manned applications.
ZPX-R Mode 5/ADS-B Receiver
For receive-only applications, the ZPX-R provides a passive Mode 5 and ADS-B receiver capability for airborne, ground, or ship-based DAA and situational awareness. The networkable, Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) receiver is small enough for portable and onboard applications, and robust enough for permanent installation for persistent surveillance.
ZPX-G GPS Receiver
The ZPX-G GPS receiver is developed from the uAvionix TSO-C145e truFYX baseline and is designed specifically to pair with the RT-2087/ZPX-C and the ZPX-R receiver. The ZPX-G position source provides fault detection and exclusion (FDE) for robust defense against satellite position errors.
ZPX-SK KIV Emulator
The Mode 5 Crypto Emulator provides customers of the uAvionix RT-2087/ZPX line of nanoIFF Mode 5 transponders with the capability to perform ground and airborne Mode 5 functional flight testing and verification when crypto appliqué keys are not available or desired – streamlining testing and field operations.
AV-30M Tactical Control Head and Traffic Display
The AV-30M is derived from the uAvionix FAA STC’d AV-30-C EFIS and provides the military mode control head functionality for the RT-2087/ZPX-C for manned applications, while also adding a traffic situational awareness display of ADS-B and Mode 5 traffic. The AV-30M will be available in Q3 2021.
With the launch of the micro IFF product line, uAvionix builds upon its FAA-certified, low-SWaP avionics products for unmanned and manned aircraft. (Source: UAS VISION)
21 Jan 21. Airspace of the Future consortium aims to integrate drone services within the wider UK transport ecosystem – Future Flight Challenge. The Airspace of the Future (AoF) consortium is made up of nine UK organisations – Altitude Angel, Thales, Cranfield University, Cranfield Airport Operations, Inmarsat, Ocado Group, Blue Bear, Satellite Applications Catapult, and Connected Places Catapult. The group come together to integrate drone services within the wider UK transport ecosystem in response to the UK Research and Innovation’s (UKRI) Future Flight Challenge (FFC).
The AoF project will pool expertise and experience across the UK to ensure routine, operational drone services can be carried out safely. The group will work to integrate quieter, more efficient, and less polluting aircraft within the rest of the transport infrastructure, ensuring aircraft can fly to and from a cost-effective network of small operating bases.
The group will also develop the supporting ground infrastructure, regulation and control systems required to use these new aircraft practically and safely, whilst the value of a mixed-use airspace will be demonstrated through innovative simulation and real-world applications.
Gary Cutts, Future Flight Challenge Director said: “At this very challenging time for the international aviation industry, it is a great testament to the UK’s drive and ambition that we have had such a strong response to the first funded Future Flight competition. The breadth, quality and creativity of the bids has been exceptional and the economic and social benefits offered are very significant. The projects we are now launching will position the UK strongly to drive the third revolution in aviation.”
The FFC supports the development of new technologies in the UK, including freight-carrying drones, urban air vehicles, and hybrid-electric regional aircraft. It is funded by £125m from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which is, in turn, expected to be matched by up to £175m from industry. Through advances in electric and autonomous flight technology, it will increase mobility and reduce road congestion, improve connectivity, scale up UK manufacturing opportunities, and help reduce the environmental impact of aviation across the globe.
Alex Cresswell, CEO of Thales in the UK, said: “We are pleased to be leading the Airspace of the Future Consortium, which will continue to drive innovation in the booming UTM market by applying new technologies to develop support ground infrastructure and air control systems. By utilising expertise from some of the UK’s most pioneering technology and transport organisations, the consortium will help deliver new, more environmentally conscious ways of providing air services for tasks such as inspection, surveying, and the delivery of goods by drones.”
For more information visit: www.altitudeangel.com (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
21 Jan 21. Hungary takes first step towards UTM implementation with R-SYS mobile application for drone pilots. The Slovak company R-SYS, subsidiary of ERA, has successfully deployed its mydronespace system for Hungarian Air Navigation Services HungaroControl. Two key components of the system– HungaroContol’s mobile application for drone pilots and UAS operators, and the web console for supervisory authorities – together constitute a keystone providing a secure registration of drone pilots and reliable airspace management service involving UAS operation in Hungary.
Mydronespace solution represents a good basis for the future U-Space (UTM) system that should fully integrate the unmanned aerial vehicles into ATC environment. Mydronespace was developed for, and delivered to HungaroControl, the Hungarian ANS provider, for its operational use and service provision. With mydronespace, HungaroControl can provide essential support to UAS pilots: mydronespace supports the situational awareness of drone pilots in accordance with the legislation in force.
“Thanks to the excellent cooperation of HungaroControl and R-SYS, mydronespace design has been tailored to the customer’s requirements, SW successfully implemented, and field tested to be finally put into full operation from January 1, 2021, on the day when Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/947 on the rules and procedures for the operation of unmanned aircraft became effective in EU,” stated Marek Náhlik, CEO of R-SYS.
The R-SYS Ltd, thus becomes one of the few producers within EU having in its portfolio a UTM solution providing drone pilot registration and UAS flight management, and Hungary becomes one of the first EU countries operating such solution and providing UTM services to drone pilots.
Before its first execution, mydronespace was subject to extensive cyber security testing as cyber threats protection was one of the key requirements the new system shall comply with. In addition, a synergistic benefit of integrating mydronespace (designed for drone pilots) into the existing NetBriefing system (designed for GA pilots) is a significant improvement of air traffic safety and airspace efficiency while air navigation service provision is facing a rapidly increasing use of UAS both for commercial and non-commercial (hobby) purposes. For more information visit: www.r-sys.eu (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
25 Jan 21. Naviris, the 50/50 owned joint venture by Fincantieri and Naval Group was officially awarded in January 2021 the ISO 9001:2015 and AQAP 2110 (NATO complementary regulation for major defense contractors) certification by Lloyd’s Register. These certifications are a further step towards the development of the joint venture, whose purpose is to manage export and cooperation programs for surface ship as well as naval R&D projects.
It was essential for Naviris to build a high standard Organization and Quality Management system to manage such complex and strategic projects.
This is now the case since Naviris in Genoa and its fully owned subsidiary Naviris France in Ollioules were awarded the ISO 9001:2015 and AQAP 2110 certifications by Lloyd’s Register both in Italy and France.
The Organization and Quality Management system is already fully operative on the two contracts granted by the OCCAR:
– in June 2020, the R&T contract with the five Research tracks requested by France and Italy – in July 2020, the Mid-Life Upgrade feasibility study for Horizon class frigate.
One of the important next steps for Naviris will be to contribute to new European projects. Naviris will be involved in the ambitious EPC European Patrol Corvette project in particular, as EU countries work together to build an innovative and modular design for the next decades. The project benefits from the effective support of European Commission through the European Defense Fund (EDF).
20 Jan 21. ENAIRE coordinates unmanned PREDATOR flights involving civil and military control. Spanish air navigation service provider ENAIRE is coordinating unmanned flights of the PREDATOR military reconnaissance, surveillance and intelligence system with the Air Force in a pioneering programme. The system is headquartered at the Talavera la Real Air Base in Badajoz.
PREDATOR missions require complex coordination between ENAIRE departments and military units in order to set up operational conditions that minimise the impact on the general air traffic, integrate and enable these operations anywhere in Spanish airspace.
ENAIRE and the Air Force are coordinating in order to set up corridors, activation periods, vertical limits and work areas for the system in a way that is safe, efficient and sustainable. Also being coordinated are the potential modifications to the normal operating procedures of air traffic controllers and, depending on this, the need to conduct, or not, the corresponding safety analyses.
PREDATOR missions entail long-duration flights, lasting as long as 24 hours, at altitudes as high as 15,000 metres. This initial phase involves test and training flights. For more information visit: www.enaire.es (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
22 Jan 21. Top US Navy IT office planning how to speed up software development. The U.S. Navy will soon have a plan for how to implement the accelerated DevSecOps software development process across the service, the chief information officer announced Thursday.
A new internal task force will deliver recommendations for how the Navy can improve its use of DevSecOps to make the practice “foundational and economical to our way of securely delivering software,” according to a memo dated Jan. 15 from Navy CIO Aaron Weis and James Geurts, then-assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition. Geurts, a political appointee, resigned his position after the inauguration of President Joe Biden.
“The challenge before us is to determine the most effective and efficient implementation across our diverse landscape of operating environments that optimizes limited resources and minimizes impact to innovation and agility,” the memo stated. “Institutionalizing DSO across the DON requires the adoption of industry best practices, standards and processes enterprise-wide.”
The task force will present its recommendations to the Navy Information Superiority Executive Steering Group, and the plan will serve as an “authoritative roadmap” for enterprise implementation of DevSecOps. The task force has 60 days from Jan. 15 to deliver its recommendations.
The memo directs the task force to identify recommendations including a framework for DevSecOps infrastructure, potential obstacles to scaling the process, and methods to keep the execution plan affordable.
The task force leader is Jane Rathbun, Navy chief technology officer and deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for information warfare and enterprise services.
“The DSO TF shall leverage industry best practices and the work of successful DOD/Naval DSO efforts underway. DSO TF recommendations shall span the diverse ecosystem of DON computing environments and conditions,” the memo states.
The Navy CIO’s office released several memos in recent months, including one in December that updated a policy aimed at accelerating cloud adoption across the service. The Navy also announced a review of its $4bn IT portfolio to gain a better understanding of its IT portfolio and where its resources are being spent.
The memos align with the Navy’s information superiority vision, released last February, that outlined the Navy’s plans to modernize and secure its networks. The COVID-19 pandemic further accelerated the Navy’s IT plans, including a Microsoft Office 365 roll out. Weis doesn’t want the Navy to lose that momentum when work from home end, he told C4ISRNET.
“Now that we know that we can fly, you know, we don’t settle for ground travel,” Weis said in December. (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
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.