A NEW LEVEL OF DEFENCE VEHICLE INTEGRATION
Modern defence vehicle platforms are designed to last. To be effective, the sensors, weapons and other systems will be updated many times through the platform lifetime. Open vehicle architectures facilitate operational and information advantage through integration, easy refit and capability augmentation.
Data and Equipment Interoperability through Electronic Architectures Electronic Architectures (EAs) connect multiple platform systems, sensors and hardware. For example, cameras, mapping, engines, power, communications, targeting and armaments. EAs allow monitoring and control of all platform elements and systems from a single interface: a platform management system.
Benefits of open electronic architectures
Many defence authorities, including the UK, recognise open platform management systems as an essential part of all defence vehicles, bringing the following benefits:
- Simplicity of operation: Integrated crew stations provide a single interface to all the platform systems allowable by that role. A unified interface on a single screen reduces cognitive burden and speeds operation, as well as reducing crew station clutter.
- Information advantage: By integrating information from all platform elements and systems on a single screen, data is combined to aid decision making. Information is received from and passed to other battlefield objects e.g. vehicles bases, dismounts.
- High-tempo capability augmentation: Simple replacement of obsolete components and addition of new capabilities or battlefield systems and applications in response to new threats or mission characteristics.
- Reduced through life costs: Condition-based monitoring, Health and Usage Monitoring (HUMS) mean that maintainers can get the equipment back in the fight faster, and vehicles are serviced when they need it.
- No vendor lock-in: Standards-based open systems allow the rapid addition of any equipment to the system, whether they directly conform to network data and power standards or are legacy equipment that requires adaptors.
- Reduced training burden: Consistent user interface simplifies operation and addition of new functions can quickly be learned. The crew can easily move between vehicles. The EA can be used in simulators.
The CGI Platform Management Software (PMSw) is suitable for all sizes and roles of defence vehicles. It integrates all platform equipment and systems onto a Crew Information Display (CID) which is then used by crew roles i.e. driver, commander, gunner, etc.
All elements of the platform and mission are monitored and controlled from the CID, using the same look and feel, simplifying vehicle operation and reducing training burden.
PMSw is standards-based and open: It uses UK MoD and NATO data protocols and Generic Vehicle Architecture (GVA) standards.
Any equipment can be integrated if it has a data connection: PMSw directly connects to standards-compliant or legacy equipment via software and hardware adaptors. Vehicle fit-out is defined in configuration so multiple vehicles can use the same system.
PMSw can run on any type of hardware and can be used as a simulation and training tool by replacing the connection to the platform with simulated data feeds.
PMSw crew interface The PMSw interface can be rapidly prototyped and reconfigured to suit any standard, environment or equipment. Any number of screens are available to all crew members through their CID, accounting for security and operational role restrictions.
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