Component Management

TTTech Aerospace releases Deterministic Ethernet Network Interface card for UAVs

10th August 2022
Sheryl Miles

The unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) market is one of the fastest growing markets and is forecasted to reach a valuation of $58.4bn by 2026 according to Markets and Markets1.

TTTech Aerospace is entering this emerging market by providing a certifiable network interface card. Mercury Systems selected TTTech Aerospace and SYSGO to provide their expertise for this program.

TTTech Aerospace supplies its TTEEnd System A664 Pro (PMC) card to connect the flight control computer from Mercury Systems to the mission system of the UAV, using SYSGO's PikeOS operating system.

"We are very proud that our certifiable TTEEnd System A664 Pro (PMC) card was successfully integrated in a modern UAV avionics system. Our TTEEnd System software driver was adapted to support SYSGO's DAL A certifiable hard real-time RTOS and hypervisor PikeOS, becoming a standard in the aerospace industry. We are delivering our deterministic network interface card and the related driver to Mercury Systems, for their integration into the flight-control computer. It was great working with the highly experienced teams of Mercury Systems and SYSGO during this great program and we look forward to the certification of our network interface card in the coming months," says Javier Gadea, Product Manager, TTTech Aerospace.

The UAV's updated avionics use TTTech Aerospace's TTEEnd System A664 Pro (PMC) card, an ARINC 664 part 7 standard compliant network interface card fully supporting AFDX.

The card ensures dual-redundant communication via Deterministic Ethernet with other elements of the avionics network, a requirement for safety-critical applications.

Franz Walkembach, VP Marketing & Alliances at SYSGO, reflects on the three-year project:

"Our collaboration with TTTech Aerospace started eight years ago with a research project funded by the German Aerospace Center (DLR). It is great to see the joint work now being successfully deployed with our certified real-time operating system (RTOS) PikeOS together with the customised driver software from TTTech Aerospace integrated in Mercury Systems' flight-control computer. This joint solution enables modular and certifiable avionics platforms that are well-suited to European and international UAV programs."

Mercury Systems' Vice President of International Growth Operations, Paul Tanner, explains the benefits for the customer: "We were able to offer our customer a reliable, certifiable interface for our high-performance flight-control computer solution. This reduced their programmatic and technical risk and allowed them to achieve certification for their UAV in a timely fashion. We have appreciated the work with TTTech Aerospace and their great team of highly skilled engineers."

TTTech Aerospace's TTEEnd System A664 Pro (PMC) delivers Deterministic Ethernet and integrates best-effort IEEE 802.3 Ethernet, rate-constrained ARINC 664 part 7 and Time-Triggered SAE AS6802 Ethernet into one physical infrastructure. The TTEEnd System A664 Pro (PMC) is certifiable to civil aerospace standards, including RTCA DO-254/DO-178C DAL A and DO-160G.

It pairs with TTTech Aerospace's Ethernet switching building blocks and network configuration tools for safety-critical applications in everything from UAVs to large aircraft.

1 https://www.marketsandmarkets.com/Market-Reports/unmanned-aerial-vehicles-uav-market-662.html (last accessed July 18, 2022)

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