Aerospace & Defence

Wind River accelerates cyber era for avionics

30th July 2020
Lanna Deamer

Wind River has announced that Wind River Linux has achieved conformance to the latest Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE) Technical Standard, a standard of The Open Group. According to the company, Wind River Linux is the first and only General Purpose Profile (GPP) Operating System Segment (OSS) of any kind to conform to the FACE Technical Standard, Edition 3.0.

As the aerospace and defence industry digitally transforms towards a cyber defence future, increasingly autonomous systems will require real time intelligence and function at the edge of the network.

The industry is faced with the pressure to innovate and accelerate development cycles faster than ever, but their systems must also maintain the intrinsic need for the highest levels of security given ever increasing cyber threats.

While only 25% of aerospace and defence executives are currently using new digital technologies, 84% consider leveraging these technologies as key to market differentiation, and meeting FACE Conformance for open source Linux helps progress that trend.

“When developing for avionics and defence applications that require absolute security, safety, and reliability projects are complex and come with high stakes; there is no room for error. However, the industry must also rapidly adopt new digital technologies and approaches to keep pace with cyber era needs,” said Michel Genard, Vice President, Products, Wind River.

“Wind River can help teams solve key hurdles standing in the way of digital transformation. With Wind River Linux achieving FACE Conformance, this introduces greater opportunities for open source innovation in next generation mission-critical systems for avionics.”

A long time champion for open standards, the achievement of FACE conformance for Wind River Linux further demonstrates Wind River’s ongoing innovation and rapid integration of portable capabilities across military applications. Wind River has been a Member of The Open Group FACE Consortium since its inception and was first to achieve conformance to the FACE Technical Standard OSS Safety Base Profile in 2017.

“We congratulate Wind River on being the first to achieve FACE Conformance for Linux,” said Judy Cerenzia, The Open Group Vice President of Forum Operations. “This new addition further expands the FACE Registry with the best-in-class solutions and creates new opportunities for innovation for next-generation military platforms.”

The FACE Technical Standard is the open avionics standard for making military computing operations more robust, interoperable, portable and secure. Software conformant with the FACE Technical Standard can be used - and most importantly, easily reused - by suppliers and integrators of avionics systems across different global defense programs and aircraft. With FACE conformance, Wind River Linux can help manufacturers and military services lower procurement costs, as well as avoid and prevent supplier lock-in.

Wind River worked with its FACE verification authority, TES-SAVI, to complete the rigorous FACE certification conformance testing for Wind River Linux.

With Wind River Linux, teams can build and deploy reliable, high performance, and secure Linux-based commercial and military aircraft systems without the risk and development effort associated with Roll-Your-Own (RYO) in-house efforts. Wind River Linux is based on a modern cloud-native framework that includes support for Docker, Kubernetes, pre-built containers, tools, and, all of which can help developers in their journey to leverage and deploy cloud-native solutions.

Avionics platforms are often in the field for decades and Wind River provides long-term support and maintenance, including security and vulnerability updates. By working with Wind River, teams can significantly reduce production and maintenance costs and accelerate development cycles in comparison to RYO efforts. Teams can freely download Wind River Linux to jump-start their evaluations and develop proof-of-concepts.

With the addition of FACE conformance for Wind River Linux, Wind River adds to its existing list of FACE certifications, which includes those for VxWorks 653 and Wind River Helix Virtualisation Platform which leverages VxWorks real time operating system technology. Both VxWorks and Wind River Linux were recently named #1 edge compute OS platforms by VDC Research.

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