Sponsored By Oxley Developments
26 May 22. New 12-slot, 3U Development Platform from Elma Aligned to SOSA 1.0 and CMOSS Initiatives.
Industry gains further resources to quickly develop and deploy interoperable, open standards-based connected systems for military applications
Technology Highlights:• 3U OpenVPX development platform provides 12 payload slots and 2 power slots
- Designed for hardware requirements of both SOSA and CMOSS initiatives
- Complete test system for rapid application development and deployment
- Includes cutting-edge RF and optical interconnect technology for several SOSA profiles
Elma Electronic Inc. has released a 12-slot, 3U Development Platform aligned to SOSA 1.0 and CMOSS. The new platform features high-speed RF and optical I/O connectivity on a number of key SOSA profiles and supports both IO-intensive and compute-intensive processor slots, two switch slots and one PNT slot as part of the test solution.
Prior to its official release, the development platform served as the heart of a successful interoperability demonstration involving three additional SOSA member companies at the Tri-Service Open Architecture Interoperability Demonstration (TSOA-ID) held in March of this year. It was the first TSOA-ID event since the SOSA Technical Standard was officially released in September of 2021.
Ken Grob, director of embedded computing at Elma Electronic Inc., noted, “Now that SOSA 1.0 has been released, streamlining development time of SOSA aligned systems is critical, so that we can speed time to market and shorten deployment of these open standards-based systems. Elma’s new 12-slot development platform provides a complete test environment to support application development for both SOSA and CMOSS initiatives.”
In addition to the 12 payload slots, the new platform also provides two VITA 62 power slots. The unit is built on an Elma Type 39 84HP-wide E-Frame chassis that provides open access for testing and troubleshooting, further facilitating rapid application development.
Dual high wattage VITA 62 3U VPX pluggable power supply modules, a network timing card with radial support for IEEE 1588 precision timing and synchronization and a 4590a 1/10/40GigE Ethernet switch with copper and fiber ports from Interface Concept round out the options available with the new development platform.
Also featured are conduction-cooled slot inserts, front and rear fan trays with 12 VDC fans and AC operation using a power cord. The platform includes a front panel on/off switch, reset switch, voltage LEDs and test points for easy operation and status acknowledgements via visual confirmations.
25 May 22. B-21 Raider’s Path to Flight Readiness. Successful loads calibration test reaffirms Northrop Grumman’s confidence in its digital models. In early May, Northrop Grumman successfully completed the first — and most critical — loads calibration test of the first B-21 aircraft. The recent test is one of three major conditions the aircraft will undergo in this phase of ground testing as it progresses toward first flight. Loads calibration, which focuses on calibrating instrumentation prior to flight and verifying structural integrity, has yielded positive and consistent results. During testing, the B-21’s airframe endures varying percentages of stress to ensure the aircraft can proceed on its path to flight readiness.
During the ground test phase, in addition to loads calibration, the team will power up the aircraft, test its subsystems, and apply coatings and paint. The next steps will include carrying out engine runs as well as low-speed and high-speed taxi tests, and then on to first flight.
From day one, Northrop Grumman has proactively worked to burn down as much production risk as possible. Throughout the Engineering, Manufacturing and Development phase, the company has emphasized risk reduction efforts and production readiness as one of the many priorities for the B-21 program. In line with the risk-based approach, the successful calibration test is a significant milestone that further validates the efficacy of the company’s digital design capabilities and advanced manufacturing techniques.
Northrop Grumman has invested in a robust production program — one that is foundational to the National Defense Strategy — to deliver the B-21 at a rate that will have a real effect for the U.S. Air Force in combating the threat. Innovative application of digital engineering and commercial off-the-shelf digital tools continue to deliver an advanced degree of precision and efficiency in the build process, with production risk reduction progressing every day as B-21 test aircraft move down the actual production line.
The first flight projection of 2023, as is now being reported by the Air Force, is aligned with the information communicated during the company’s Q1 earnings call and remains on-schedule to the government Acquisition Program Baseline.
As the Air Force has indicated, the focus is on a safe first flight of a production representative aircraft. With six aircraft in various stages of production and test, Northrop Grumman is progressing toward that objective as it continues to reduce risk, refine the building process, and mature the test fleet ahead of first flight.
Randy Walden, director of the Department of the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office and program executive officer of the B-21 Raider program, recently said, “The B-21 test aircraft is the most production-representative aircraft, both structurally and in its mission systems, at this point in a program, that I’ve observed in my career.” With the first aircraft in the ground test phase and a successful loads calibration under its belt, Northrop Grumman is paving the way for the B-21 Rollout later this year and first flight in 2023.
26 May 22. Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions, a leading supplier of Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) based solutions engineered to succeed, announced that it demonstrated its groundbreaking VPX3-E320 Ruggedized Universal Software Defined Radio (SDR) card, a 3U OpenVPX module developed under agreement with NI, at NI Connect 2022, May 24-25 at the Austin Convention Center, Austin, Texas. Curtiss-Wright’s VPX3-E320 Rugged SDR module is an OpenVPX functional equivalent variant of the Ettus Research USRP E320 and is fully compatible with the USRP Hardware Driver (UHD). It features a flexible 2 x 2 MIMO RF Agile Transceiver with 12-bit ADCs and DACs. Using an NI Commercial Ettus E320 USRP unit, functionally equivalent to the rugged VPX3-E320, system designers can quickly and cost-effectively develop SDR applications for deployment on a VPX3-E320 in OpenVPX environments.
“At NI Connect 2022, in support of MOSA principles and innovation, we are proud to showcase our VPX3-E320 Rugged SDR module, that brings NI’s extremely popular Ettus Research USRP E320 technology to rugged OpenVPX based CMOSS and SOSA Technical Standard aligned deployed systems,” said Chris Wiltsey, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions. “This open standards SDR solution provides system designers with a compelling choice for deploying rugged battlefield communications capabilities.”
“Accelerated development and deployment of EW systems is a critical need for the warfighter today,” said Haydn Nelson, Principal Solutions Manager for Radar and EW in NI’s Aerospace, Defense, and Government Business Unit. “Allied defense organizations have long desired a way to leverage commercial technology to reduce development time. NI’s collaboration with Curtiss-Wright on the VPX3-E320 is a realization of that need, enabling rapid migration of EW capabilities to the field on a SOSA aligned platform.”
About the VPX3-E320
Curtiss-Wright’s VPX3-E320, the first fully rugged OpenVPX variant of the Ettus Research USRP E320 SDR solution, enables applications developed in the lab to be seamlessly transitioned to mission hardware. The conduction cooled 3U OpenVPX module speeds and eases the integration of critical SDR capabilities, such as deployed SIGINT, tactical communications, and reconfigurable jamming, into platforms deployed in harsh environments. The board supports tunable bandwidths from 200 kHz to 56 MHz over a frequency range from 70 MHz to 6 GHz. Baseband signal processing uses a Xilinx Zynq® 7045 System-on-Chip FPGA to deliver accelerated FPGA computations and software-based processing using its dual-core Arm® CPU. Device configuration can be accomplished with the NI USRP UHD, either through GNU Radio or with common programming languages such as Python or C++. Applications previously developed on the USRP E320 will port directly to the VPX3-E320.
The VPX3-E320 module’s backplane I/O is designed for alignment with the latest RF system implementation standards, including CMOSS, the Vehicular Integration for C4ISR/EW Interoperability (VICTORY), and Modular Open RF Architecture (MORA). Designed for superior durability and reliable operation in harsh environments, the VPX3-E320 incorporates Curtiss-Wright’s industry-leading rugged hardware design and validation practices to meet the stringent requirements of the most demanding front-line conditions.
Complete CMOSS/SOSA System Solutions
Curtiss-Wright offers a broad range of CMOSS/SOSA- aligned system building blocks, including:
- VPX3-E320 Rugged SDR ruggedized universal software-defined radio peripheral
- CHAMP-XD3 Intel® Xeon®-D 1700-based DSP engine
- VPX3-687 VICTORY data / control plane Ethernet switch
- VPX3-663 PCIe Gen 3 / 10G Ethernet hybrid switch
- VPX3-673A A-PNT/Radial Clock card
- VPX3-1260 9th Gen Intel Xeon-E processor-powered general-purpose single board computer
- VPX3-4935 NVIDIA® Quadro™ Turing™-power GPU-coprocessing engine
- 8-slot 3U OpenVPX CMOSS/SOSA-aligned enclosure
- CMOSS/SOSA Starter Kit for ground combat vehicles with VPX3-1260, VPX3-673A and VPX3-687 modules.
Broadest Range of MOSA Solutions for Aerospace & Defense Programs Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions MOSA open architecture solutions eliminate proprietary interfaces through the use of widely supported consensus-based standards for the major system interfaces between systems and components. From rugged COTS components and modules to ready-to-integrate subsystems, our full suite of solutions, and our product road map, all adhere to MOSA.
Curtiss-Wright MOSA Solutions include fully integrated CMOSS/SOSA aligned systems, as well as 3U and 6U OpenVPX system building blocks. For system development we offer complete system architecture services, Quick Reaction Capabilities, and development platforms such as our 3U OpenVPX CMOSS/SOSA-aligned enclosures and CMOSS/SOSA Starter Kits.
We offer the most comprehensive range of open standards based small form factor subsystems and modules, including the PacStar® 400 Series of modular tactical warfighter communications solutions, the ultra-compact Parvus® family of processing and network line replaceable units (LRU), and a complete line of data acquisition solutions. Our MOSA based rugged data solutions support high-density secure data storage protected with either Type 1 Top Secret or NSA-certified Commercial Solutions for Classified (CSfC) encryption. Designed for use on platforms that experience intense shock and vibration, such as helicopters and ground vehicles, our family of video management systems and rugged touchscreen LCD displays delivers optimal performance in harsh environments.
Whether in the air, on the ground, or at sea, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions MOSA technologies deliver high reliability and performance for the most demanding deployed applications, such as Battle Command, Mission Analysis & Planning, SIGINT, RADAR, EW, Flight Test, Jamming, Comms, Fire Control, Vehicle Electronics and Human Machine Interfaces
24 May 22. Kontron Launches DARC™ VX208 SWaP-C Mission Platform. High-performance rugged VPX mission computer for data processing, video, graphics and AI. Kontron, a leading global provider of IoT/Embedded Computing Technology (ECT), today announces the DARC™ VX208, a very high-performance, ruggedized and secure SWaP-constrained mission computer system.
Kontron’s DARC™ VX208 is well-suited for deployment in a wide range of harsh military and aerospace environments, such as mission computing, command/control, electronic warfare and vetronics.
Ideal for radars and other high definition video processing applications requiring high bandwidth to transmit large data volumes, the DARC™ VX208 combines two Optical 10 GbE ports with server-class processing and MIL-DTL38999 I/O performance. Its powerful graphics capabilities, with support for optional NVIDIA or AMD GPU modules, enable networked video streaming and processing including image fusion for real-time situational awareness. For added convenience and security, the external SSD can be removed in less than 30 seconds and the multiple expansion slots allow easy customization of the platform interfaces.
Alain Spors, General Manager Kontron France, says: “The DARC VX208 system’s rugged, compact design and modular open architecture makes it ideal as a flexible and powerful compute solution for integrators looking to deploy high-performance GPU-based technologies on-board SWaP-constrained vehicle and aircraft platforms. Furthermore, designed and technically supported in France means it is free of International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) restrictions.”
Based on the low power Intel® Core™ i7-1185GRE quad-core processor, the fanless system’s fully sealed enclosure measures 272 x 230 x 100 mm (housing only) and weighs under 7 kg. Capable of operation over extended temperature ranges, the DARC™ VX208 is highly certified including MIL-STD-1275E for 28 VDC power supply, MIL-STD 810G shock/vibration resistance, and MIL-STD-461 F electromagnetic compatibility. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
25 May 22. USN works with industry to explore alternative fuel sources. The US Navy (USN) is working with industry to develop other potential sources of fuel as well as possible alternative modes of power, according to Meredith Berger, acting assistant secretary of the navy for energy, installations, and environment.
“We are working with industry on what other types of low-emissions fuel-energy types are out there,” Berger said on 23 May during a media roundtable discussion of the USN’s “Climate Action 2030” plan, which was released on 24 May.
She described such work as being in the “survey stage” and noted the “driving element”, always, would be the impact on the USN and US Marine Corps (USMC) to “make mission”.
Berger also added that the USN was successful with hybrid-electric ship propulsion plant efforts, with vessels like Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8). “But there’s also a lot of development to do in terms of technology.” (Source: Janes)
24 May 22. Defence Academy opens online research repository for UK defence and allies. An innovative digital project launching at the Defence Academy is poised to make decades of defence research available to UK defence personnel and allies. The Defence Academy Research Engine (DARE) is due to launch in September 2022. Designed by the Centre for Defence Education Research and Analysis (CDERA), the DARE will be an accessible and searchable online environment collating historic and current research papers, authored by members of the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom. It will also serve as a portal to collect proposed research topics which Defence Academy students can tackle.
Announcing the launch of the DARE project, Major General Andrew Roe, Chief Executive and Commandant of the Defence Academy, said:
The Defence Academy is enormously proud to be spearheading this new and innovative capability, which is fit for the Information Age, unrivalled across defence.
By facilitating access to a comprehensive single source of research, the DARE will enable the Defence Academy to act as a problem solver and academic powerhouse for defence, pulling together the latest in critical thinking and thought leadership.
There is a wealth of knowledge, experience and intellect within the Defence Academy, and we look forward to sharing this capability more widely with our armed forces and with allies across government, academia and industry.
Chris Taylor, from CDERA, said: “At CDERA we are committed to engaging in and promoting problem-based learning within and beyond the Defence Academy community. DARE will facilitate access to research that is rigorous, applicable, relevant and digestible for the defence and security sector. We are absolutely delighted to be embarking on this incredibly exciting project, which will support learners and Defence Academy partners to develop and sustain the intellectual edge as well as helping to solve problems within defence.”
For design and build of the DARE application, CDERA has contracted with Squiz, a global technology company with a pedigree of delivering digital solutions for high-profile organisations.
Their clients include UK government departments, such as the Cabinet Office and National Health Service, and well-respected higher education institutions including University College London and the universities of Oxford and Cambridge.
Nick Condon, Managing Director of Squiz UK, said: “At Squiz our mission is to create services online, that improve people’s lives offline. We’re incredibly proud to be selected by CDERA to create a platform that consolidates some of the world’s best defence research in an easy to search, review and consume platform. The best digital solutions occur when technology and people intersect with a clear outcome. Squiz are confident that our partnership with CDERA on the DARE application will provide the UK’s best researchers and thought leaders with the insight they need to create tomorrow’s defence solutions.”
The DARE will be hosted via a portal on the Defence Academy website, with access automatically enabled for MOD personnel via Defence Gateway log-in credentials. CDERA will also create individual accounts for interested external parties who are also set to benefit from this new capability.
The target launch date for the DARE is September 2022.
17 May 22. Hub for EU Defence Innovation Established within EDA. EDA Defence Ministers, meeting today at the Agency’s ministerial Steering Board, have approved the establishment of a Hub for EU Defence Innovation (HEDI) within EDA. The Hub will strengthen the Agency’s existing innovation activities but also initiate new ones, in close cooperation with Member States and EU stakeholders. Today’s decision comes after the Strategic Compass for Security and Defence, approved in March, called for the creation of such a Hub in 2022.
HEDI will act as a platform to stimulate, facilitate and support cooperation on defence innovation among Member States while ensuring synergies with related European Commission activities, notably the EU defence innovation scheme, and coherence of output with NATO innovation initiatives such as the Defence Innovation Accelerator for the North Atlantic (DIANA).
HEDI will operate at the intersection of EDA’s already existing innovation activities, serving as a catalyst and amplifier. The existing Innovation Framework in EDA contains the necessary tools to support collaborative defence innovation and is based on three pillars: – identification of innovative ideas and innovators; – implementation of these ideas; – outreach to increase the awareness of the solutions produced and their application to the defence domain. HEDI’s activities will be focused on the agreed EU priorities for capability development (Capability Development Plan), defence research (Overarching Strategic Research Agenda) as well as industrial capabilities (Key Strategic Activities).
The Head of EDA, HR/VP Josep Borrell, said: “Less than two months after the adoption of the EU’s Strategic Compass, we deliver on one of the Compass’ main priorities by establishing the European Defence Agency’s Defence Innovation Hub. Working closely with the Commission, the Hub will help our Armed Forces to step up their innovation efforts to be better prepared for the future battlefield and the next generation technologies”.
EDA Chief Executive, Jiří Šedivý said: “With the rapid development of new and often disruptive technologies and their fast weaponisation, innovation has become a geostrategic factor shaping the international security environment and the global balance of power. The establishment of HEDI is a clear signal that our Ministries of Defence take innovation seriously and that they want to invest more in it, and act together. HEDI will help develop the synergies needed to connect existing innovation efforts and stimulate the launch of new ones, for the benefit of European Defence”.
THREE STEP APPROACH
Three steps have been defined for the Hub to progressively grow and fulfil its role:
- Step 1: inspiring and promoting innovation at EU level. During this ramp-up phase, the Hub will focus on networking and situational awareness activities, making the most of existing EDA resources. Activities to be deployed during this initial phase include the exchange of best innovation practices across the EU and the organisation of a first European Defence Innovation Day on 31 May 2022. HEDI will also contribute to creating a ‘common picture’ of defence innovation in Europe. For this purpose, it will organise stakeholder groups and workshops and set up and manage networks of defence innovation organisations and researchers who will be invited to exchange views on these topics once or twice a year.
- Step 2: facilitating innovation across Member States and EU institutions. This second phase will see HEDI drive activities such as the upgrade of the existing EDA Defence Innovation Prize (increase in the number of prizes awarded and of domains covered), the funding of proof-of-concept of innovative ideas, the organisation of European Defence Innovation Shows, the launch in cooperation with partners of so-called Innovation Challenges (a specific R&T methodology targeting short cycles of development from proof-of-principle to minimum viable product), as well as specific actions to support the uptake of innovation ideas/concepts towards capability development.
- Step 3: making of HEDI an EU-wide platform for cooperative design and experimentation embedded in the EU capability development process. The activities to be undertaken will be decided by Member States at a later stage.
EMBEDDED IN EDA
HEDI will be embedded within the existing EDA framework and staffed by EDA personnel. According to guidelines approved today, the launch of the new Hub should not come at the expense of existing EDA activities. It will function under EDA’s 3-Year Planning Framework with a yearly reporting and evaluation in the starting phase. EDA shall regularly report to the Steering Board on the progress and way ahead, specifically on the impact, lessons learned, and possible updates of the stepped implementation plan. The Steering Board will evaluate the progress of the HEDI and its proposed activities for the next year.
The work that led to the creation of HEDI initially started in May 2021 when the Foreign Affairs Council called for reinforcing EDA’s role in fostering defence innovation and tasked the HR/VP and Head of EDA, Josep Borrell, to present options by the end of 2021. Among the options put on the table (and now approved) was that of establishing a Hub for EU Defence Innovation within EDA. (Source: EDA)
23 May 22. TransDigm subsidiary buys flight instrument product line from Astronautics. Extant Aerospace, a subsidiary of US aircraft parts maker TransDigm Group, has expanded its defence aviation portfolio by acquiring the Electromagnetic Indicator product line from Astronautics Corporation of America for about USD27 m in cash, the buyer announced on 19 May. The line of flight instruments consists of attitude director indicators (ADIs), horizontal situation indicators (HSIs), and bearing distance heading indicators (BDHIs). Extant will take over producing and maintaining the indicators, which are mainly used on military aircraft. The product line’s tooling and other assets will move from Astronautics’ site in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, near Milwaukee to Extant’s facility in Melbourne, Florida. The transaction does not involve the transfer of employees, said David Souders, Extant’s vice-president of business development. The acquisition news came less than two months after Extant announced it had purchased the assets and technical data rights of Moog’s Electro-Optical Tracker and Camera systems, which are used mainly on land- and sea-based military platforms. (Source: Janes)
23 May 22. Rohde & Schwarz announces unique 56 GHz and 67 GHz frequency options for R&S SMW200A vector signal generator. Rohde & Schwarz has introduced not just one but two new maximum frequencies for the R&S SMW200A vector signal generator, bringing previously impossible high performance to digitally modulated signals up to 67 GHz and beyond. The R&S SMW200A is first to enable flat frequency response and 2 GHz modulation bandwidth above 44 GHz. In addition to all applications already supported up to 44 GHz, the 100 kHz to 56 GHz option covers all currently used 5G frequencies, plus earth-to-satellite applications. The 100 kHz to 67 GHz option also supports planned higher frequency 5G bands, the 60 GHz WiGig band, and inter-satellite links.
For the past decade the ceiling for a standalone vector signal generator capable of creating complex digitally modulated signals with high accuracy has been 44 GHz. Higher frequencies have only been possible with additional external frequency upconverters or lower accuracy, both of which have limitations. Now, with new options for maximum frequencies of 56 GHz and 67 GHz, the R&S SMW200A from Rohde & Schwarz dramatically raises the limits for generating wide bandwidth digitally modulated signals of high quality. A maximum modulation bandwidth of 2 GHz is supported, meeting the requirements of even the wider subcarrier spacings defined for 5G FR2 Release 17, and wideband satellite transmissions. The established R&S SMW200A signal qualities including excellent modulation, flat frequency response, and four hardware-based levels of phase noise performance equally apply to the new frequency options.
Applications in the U and V bands now supported include mobile radio, Wireless LAN, and satellite communications. For mobile radio engineers developing RF components and products to support the 5G mobile radio spectrum available in the 47 GHz frequency band already allocated by the FCC to US network operators, the R&S SMW200A with 56 GHz or 67 GHz option is the ideal signal generator. 3GPP Release 17 specifying further enhancements to 5G has reached a well-defined stage, so the developers will be looking for a signal generator to cover the now extended FR2 frequency range from 52.6 GHz up to 71 GHz. The only suitable signal generator currently available is an R&S SMW200A with a 67 GHz frequency option – supporting up to 72 GHz in overrange mode.
The new frequency options are equally interesting for high frequency WiFi and Wireless LAN, including IEEE 802.11ad, which operates in the 60 GHz unlicensed band (57-71 GHz). For satellite communication applications, forward and reverse links operate between 37.5 GHz and 52.4 GHz; inter-satellite links use frequencies up to 66 GHz with bandwidths up to 2 GHz.
In addition, for demanding applications above 44 GHz throughout the Aerospace and Defense industry, or for generating digitally modulated signals including early research on 6G components and systems, an R&S SMW200A with frequency options for 56 GHz or 67 GHz, is the high-performance single instrument signal source of choice.
The new R&S SMW200A vector signal generator frequency options are now available from Rohde & Schwarz. For further information visit: www.rohde-schwarz.com/products/_63493-38656.html
Oxley Group Ltd
Oxley offer a range of Military Marine NVG friendly LED lighting that includes navigation lights and controls, flight deck landing lights and interior compartment lighting. Our lighting products are used by Navies around the world including our own Royal Navy on UK Aircraft Carriers, Canadian Frigates, Swedish Submarines, Australian Surface vessels and Submarines, on board French Naval Carriers and in Naval Gun Turrets.
The technology is extremely energy efficient and built robustly, with proven long life. The lighting is NVG friendly, dimmable and programmable to allow for operations with aircraft pilots using military night vision goggles. They offer superior design giving high reliability for the most demanding environments with high sealing and the ability to meet the most stringent EMC standards.
Oxley are proud to say that we are working in partnership with SeaKing to enable a control panel to be offered with our LED Navigation Lighting. All of Oxley navigation lights have been specifically developed for vessels over 50 metres.
Contact Marcus Goad on 07850 917 263 for more information or to arrange samples.
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.