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LynxOS-178 offers portability for safety critical software designs

27th April 2017
Lanna Deamer

Lynx Software Technologies has announced LynxOS-178 2.2.4, a new version of its widely deployed DO-178 certified RTOS. Supporting open standards such as FACE (Future Airborne Capability Environment), POSIX (Portable Operating System Interface) and APEX (ARINC 653 APplication EXecutive), LynxOS-178 offers true portability for safety-critical software designs.

LynxOS-178 2.2.4 is also offered with a full set of DO-178C DAL-A certification artifacts for systems requiring the highest level of avionics safety certification.

LynxOS-178 2.2.4 will be first shown at the Avionics Electronics Europe conference from the 25th-26th April in Munich, Germany. LynxOS-178 is being demonstrated on a Curtiss-Wright hardware platform, running safety critical software applications from ENSCO Avionics and Core Avionics & Industrial (CoreAVI) on the Lynx booth (#G5).

LynxOS-178 is the first and only time- and space-partitioned RTOS to have obtained a RSC (Reusable Software Component) award from the FAA (Federal Aviation Authority). LynxOS-178 2.2.4 will obtain the third RSC award for the product line, building upon the success of two previous RSC awards. The RSC comprises the LynxOS-178 kernel, supporting a comprehensive set of standards-based API’s, along with middleware including a file system and health monitor. The RSC allows avionics systems developers to receive certification credit for the LynxOS-178 RTOS, significantly reducing the time, cost and risk associated with the safety certification process.

Robert Day, VP of Marketing at Lynx said: “Since its release, LynxOS-178 has saved avionics system designers millions of hours and dollars in development time and costs. We estimate that customers get to market six to nine months faster by using the RSC features of this OS. LynxOS-178 2.2.4 has been developed to fully meet the requirements of DO-178C - the latest standard used by the FAA to certify commercial software-based aviation systems, while maintaining the open standards support such as FACE and POSIX to allow true software portability even for safety-critical applications”.

One of the first users of LynxOS-178 2.2.4, Rockwell Collins, has been a key customer and collaborator in the development of the LynxOS-178 solution. Rockwell Collins has deployed LynxOS-178 in over 30 avionics designs, and they have benefitted from the reliability and reusability that LynxOS-178 provides.

The LynxOS-178 product line is supported by a broad ecosystem of partners, including COTS hardware suppliers and ISVs (Independent Software Vendors).

“The combination of safety certifiability and FACE support makes this latest version of Lynx’s LynxOS-178 real-time OS a compelling solution for avionics system integrators seeking to lower their program risk and speed the development and deployment of COTS-based systems,” said Lynn Bamford, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Defense Solutions division, Curtiss-Wright. “We look forward to collaborating with Lynx to bring the many exciting new features of LynxOS-178 2.2.4 to our industry-leading family of D0-254 safety certifiable OpenVPX modules.”

The recent move by our COTS hardware partners to provide safety certified boards allows avionics developers to shorten their time and cost of deployment, and when coupled with LynxOS-178 gives a very compelling solution to help solve tough avionics safety requirements.

“Partnering with Lynx, we are already working with a number of mutual customers for whom certifiability is imperative – and so the combination of the SBC314 and LynxOS-178 2.2.4 is enormously attractive,” said Mrinal Iyengar, Vice President, Product Management at Abaco Systems.  “We have made a significant forward-looking, non-program-specific investment in delivering the artifacts necessary to support our customers in achieving DAL A, reducing their effort, cost and time to deployment.”

LynxOS-178 2.2.4 offers full native POSIX.1 support including all the services specified by POSIX 1.b (real time extensions) and POSIX 1.c (threads extensions). This open-standards support allows safety software applications to be easily ported from one system to another, and facilitates the ready migration of applications written for other POSIX OSes such as Linux. LynxOS-178 2.2.4 also supports the latest FACE 2.1 standard, providing APIs for the Security, Safety Basic and Safety Extended profiles. LynxOS-178 2.2.4 is complemented by the Lynx Certifiable Stack (LCS), a DO-178C certifiable TCP/IP protocol stack, for safety certified networking components.

LynxOS-178 2.2.4 is initially released for a range of PowerPC QorIQ processors from NXP based on the P Series and T Series architectures, including T2080, T2081, T1024 and P3041. Lynx is also porting LynxOS-178 2.2.4 to Intel x86 and ARM platforms, enabling designers to take advantage of its modular architecture and deploy the RTOS on the most appropriate hardware platform based on the requirements of the application. Lynx will also provide a para-virtualised version of the RTOS to enable safety critical workloads to run on the LynxSecure Separation Kernel Hypervisor.

LynxOS-178 2.2.4 raises the bar for reusability with open standards support and certifiability with its DO-178C DAL-A artifacts and RSC, and now also offers an aviation-grade runtime path for other safety-critical industries.

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