Aerospace & Defence

Artesyn's ATCA technology selected by military contractors

21st October 2015
Nat Bowers

Artesyn Embedded Technologies has revealed that its ATCA (AdvancedTCA) technology has been selected for multiple applications in military deployments. Several U.S. DoD branches, prime contractors and system integrators have adopted ATCA for a range of centralised compute systems on board ships, aircraft or in transit cases for command and control tents.

Network Equipment Building System (NEBS) standards, which were the foundation for the environmental characteristics of ATCA technology in telecommunications applications, have also been a good foundation for many of these military deployments. In parallel, military and prime contractors are migrating their compute requirements to open standards based equipment to take advantage of a competitive ecosystem of technology providers and help mitigate obsolescence.

One of the first deployments was in the latest refresh of a shipboard combat system deployed to coordinate the defence of a battle group. The system takes a variety of radar data and tracks incoming objects, identifies whether it is friend or foe and coordinates the response systems to eliminate any threat.

One of the most expensive parts of requalifying new computer systems for such a deployment is the integration of those systems into the shock isolated racks deployed on ships. Artesyn ATCA equipment has passed both simulated and actual afloat shock testing, commonly known as barge tests, and meets all the functional requirements for deployment, including physical size, weight and power consumption. This is crucial because qualifying the chassis and rack creates a foundation for future refreshes, such that Artesyn’s military customers will no longer have to swap out the entire system but just upgrade to newer generation of payload blades.

Other deployments of Artesyn ATCA technology in military programmes include a patrol and reconnaissance aircraft, shipboard anti-air defence system, common ground control station for UAVs and an unmanned marine vessel.

Artesyn has published a white paper, ATCA for Military, Aerospace and Other High Performance Embedded Computing Users, that addresses the forces driving the requirements of high performance embedded computing for military and aerospace applications, including the modular open system approach, COTS, and reduced size, weight, power and cost as it applies to ATCA technology.

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