Software Reuse in Avionics: A FACE Approach

Over the last decade, U.S. military procurements have seen increased pressure for more cost-efficient, reusable and modular, standards-based applications ready for flight for both manned and unmanned missions. As a result, the industry is experiencing a shift toward open architecture standards and development designed to ensure standardization and reuse of code for applications such as avionics, ultimately aimed at lowering acquisition costs. Standards such as the Open Group Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE™) have emerged as a progressive alternative to traditional development.

Software conformant with the FACE Technical Standard can be used—and most importantly, easily reused—by suppliers and integrators of avionics systems across different programs and aircraft. To lead the support of this innovative new technical and business model, Wind River® marched its VxWorks® 653 platform through the FACE conformance certification process to be the first FACE Technical Standard Operating Systems Segment (OSS) Safety Base Profile certified product. This achievement reaffirms the Wind River commitment to supporting the acquisition of affordable software systems that promote innovation and rapid integration of software-defined capabilities across global defense programs. This paper sets forth the challenges surrounding the transition to open architecture designs and the positive technical and business impact on the avionics industry.

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