Avionics Design – January 2016                               
January 2016

The Avionics Design monthly E-newsletter from the editorial staff of mil-embedded.com covers hardware and software avionics designs and certification issues in the commercial and military avionics markets in the U.S. and Europe via the Military Embedded Systems partnership with Aviation Maintenance magazine and the Aviation Electronics Europe show.

In partnership with:
Aviation Electronics Europe





Orion spacecraft's avionics designed for reliability in deep space
Orion spacecraft's avionics designed for reliability in deep space

Unlike those used in manned spaceflight platforms of the past, the avionics and other electronics used in NASA's Orion spacecraft are driven mostly by software and commercial processor technology ruggedized and radiation-hardened to endure extreme radiation and temperature fluctuations. Orion's updated avionics also can handle the severe acoustic and vibration environments associated with launch, orbit, a fiery reentry, and a saltwater landing.


Software-induced hardware obsolescence: The big fix
Software-induced hardware obsolescence: The big fix

Embedded systems in military applications - because of their long operational life and the changes to requirements experienced during use - are particularly prone to software aging, which can result in degradations in performance. This can, in turn, lead to expensive, unplanned hardware upgrades. One approach to avoid these upgrades is applying optimization to aged software.


Integrated modular and distributed avionics take flight
Integrated modular and distributed avionics take flight

By treating connectivity as a system, aerospace designers can evaluate various tradeoffs – copper versus fiber, types of shielding, cable construction, and the like – to meet requirements for both signal integrity and the environmental and mechanical needs of the application.


Shift left boosts avionics software verification
Shift left boosts avionics software verification

Many organizations developing avionics software still suffer from poor verification practices. Certain verification techniques can benefit those seeking compliance to avionics certification standards through a strategy of defect avoidance.



Astronauts wanted: NASA looks for more space explorers
Astronauts wanted: NASA looks for more space explorers

Do you like to travel? Enjoy a spectacular view? Enjoy traveling at high speeds? Moving in zero gravity? Word is NASA hiring astronauts so you may want to ditch the cube walls and get ready for a career in orbit.


Potential full-year CR could impact 400 Army programs, say Army officials
Potential full-year CR could impact 400 Army programs, say Army officials

A potential year-long Continuing Resolution (CR) caused by Congress being unable to pass a 2016 budget by December could result and would affect about 400 Army programs totaling about $6 billion, said Heidi Shyu, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology during a press conference.


AltiVec is back
AltiVec is back

Freescale’s new T-series processor has brought back the AltiVec floating point SIMD instruction set, the heart of many defense and aerospace digital signal processing (DSP) applications for the last two decades. AltiVec, a mainstay of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) DSP boards for years, went missing in action for one series of previous devices. A disappearing act that led embedded system users to look for an alternative solution.


Getting the most out of ARINC 429
Getting the most out of ARINC 429

Four decades old and counting, the ARINC 429 bus protocol is going strong. Its presence on the A310/320, A330/340, B737, B747, B757, B767, and MD-11 means that it will be popular for many years to come. Even more recent products with highly integrated avionics architectures – such as the B777, B787, and A380 – still use 429 buses to transport sensor data. The same is true for military platforms based on commercial aircraft, including the Navy’s P-8 Poseidon.


Going modular? Meet data and control coupling
Going modular? Meet data and control coupling

Since the dawn of the discipline of software engineering, one of the persistent mantras has been modularization. This structured design and functional decomposition approach breaks software down into clearly defined functional units, or modules, with unambiguous interfaces. The proven value of this approach is high quality software. When you go modular, however, software testing must examine the way that the modules come together and interact. This kind of testing is dubbed “data and control coupling.”


My 20 years of NBAA
My 20 years of NBAA

I have been going to the NBAA Conference for 20 years. It almost sounds like the start of a joke to say, “I remember my first NBAA…” but the truth is, I do remember it vividly. Flying to NBAA in a corporate jet for this annual meeting of the business jet world was a highlight. It might have been one of the last years they extended that opportunity to employees beyond the executive level.


Saving the bottom line: DER repair alternatives
Saving the bottom line: DER repair alternatives

Operators have an array of choices when it comes to deciding what to do about worn or damaged parts. Among the options are buying a new part from an original equipment manufacturer (OEM), having the part repaired by an OEM-affiliated repair station, buying a new Parts Manufacturer Approval component from a non-OEM source, and obtaining a designated engineering representative (DER)-approved repair.


SMS for MROs
SMS for MROs

Safety management systems are rapidly becoming differentiators for today’s leading MROs. Starting with the right plan and culture are critical to making your SMS implementation a success. The fact is there are very few industries that are as unforgiving of errors as aviation maintenance. Unfortunately for us, mistakes are just as much a part of the human condition as breathing. So how can mistakes be found and fixed before they become headlines?



New aircraft production down, avionics upgrade funding steady
New aircraft production down, avionics upgrade funding steady

Budget cuts and sequestration have reduced funding for new aircraft platforms but there are still pockets of funding for avionics and flight decks in existing military aircraft. In this Q&A with Troy Brunk, Vice President and General Manager of Airborne Solutions for Rockwell Collins Government Systems, he discusses his outlook for military avionics technology, what pilots want avionics technology to do for them, and the situational-awareness benefits of synthetic vision technology.





NAVAIR avionics program seeks proposals for FY 2017 projects
NAVAIR avionics program seeks proposals for FY 2017 projects

U.S. Navy officials at the Avionics Component Improvement Program (AvCIP) will award more than $10 million in funds for 2017 projects. NAVAIR’s Air Combat Electronics Program Office (PMA-209) officials will manage the proposal process for the Office of Naval Operations (OPNAV). Nominations forms are due January 29 and projects will be selected by the end of May and can start executing as soon as October.



EASA and European Commission to keynote Aviation Electronics Europe 2016
EASA and European Commission to keynote Aviation Electronics Europe 2016

Gzim Ocakoglu, Policy Advisor, European Commission / DG MOVE and Friedhelm Runge, Avionics Expert, European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) have been announced as keynote speakers at the Aviation Electronics Europe conference and exhibition to be held April 20-21 in Munich, Germany at the MOC Event Center.


Real-time video streaming for Army helicopter cockpits designed by Rockwell Collins
Real-time video streaming for Army helicopter cockpits designed by Rockwell Collins

Engineers at Rockwell Collins engineers designed a solution called Secure Real Time Video (SRTV) that enables warfighters to see real-time video from an unmanned aircraft directly in the cockpit of their military helicopter.


FAA releases web-based system for small UAS registration
FAA releases web-based system for small UAS registration

Owners of small unmanned aircraft (UAS) can use a new streamlined, web-based process to register their aircraft. U.S. Department Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) officials announced the new ruling during the holiday season.


New Drone Training School Opens with CAA Approved Courses
New Drone Training School Opens with CAA Approved Courses

A brand new drone training school formed by a team accustomed to flying drones across Hollywood movie sets, and commercial airliners across some of the busiest airspace in the world, has opened. UAV Air is the brainchild of four senior airline pilots along with two of the country’s most widely respected drone operators, Cloud12 and UAViate.


Contract with NAVAIR supports standard of RNP RNAV aligned with FACE Technical Standard
Contract with NAVAIR supports standard of RNP RNAV aligned with FACE Technical Standard

Rockwell Collins will support government development of a standard of interfaces for Required Navigation Performance Area Navigation (RNP RNAV) capability aligned to the FACE Technical Standard under a contract with the U.S. U.S. Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR).


Jet Aviation Basel to Install First Honeywell JetWave Ka-Band SatCom System on B747-400
Jet Aviation Basel to Install First Honeywell JetWave Ka-Band SatCom System on B747-400

Jet Aviation Basel has recently signed an agreement to perform the world’s first installation of a Ka-Band satellite communications system (SCS) on a Boeing B747-400 aircraft. The company will install Honeywell’s JetWave fuselage-mounted antenna (MCS- 8200) to support the Ka-Band satellite communications (Satcom) system.


Anti-UAV system released by Blighter, Chess Dynamics, and Enterprise Control Systems
Anti-UAV system released by Blighter, Chess Dynamics, and Enterprise Control Systems

Experts at Blighter Surveillance Systems, Chess Dynamics, and Enterprise Control Systems joined hands to develop an anti-UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) system to help defeat the emerging threat of malicious micro, mini, and larger UAVs or drones that may carry weapons, cameras, toxic chemicals, or explosives.


HUD Market Predicted to Grow to $9.02 Billion by 2020
HUD Market Predicted to Grow to $9.02 Billion by 2020

According to a new market research report on the “Head-Up Display Market by Component (Video Generator, Projector, Software, Combiner and Others), Application (Military & Civil Aviation, and Automotive, Premium/Luxury Cars, Sports Cars, and Mid-Segment Cars), and Geography – Global Forecast to 2020,” the market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 26.23 percent between 2015 and 2020, and reach USD 9.02 Billion by 2020.




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