Test & Measurement

Video protocol analyser manages multiple embedded streams

23rd January 2018
Alice Matthews

By adding multi stream capabilities, Great River Technology's Video and Protocol Analyser (VPA) makes it easier to develop advanced capabilities of the ARINC 818 Avionics Digital Video Bus. Multi Stream empowers the VPA to tackle ARINC 818 interfaces with multiple embedded streams of high-speed video. For example, a system designer sending multiple sensor streams over a single cable can use it to study each component stream separately.

Multi Stream is now a standard feature of the VPA. Upon receiving a signal with embedded stream, it identifies source IDs it recognises. Unrecognised source IDs are listed and staged so that a designer can quickly assign a profile, and each component stream then can be individually analysed.

GRT's VPA was introduced a decade ago as a key development tool for verifying compliance with the ARINC 818 standard, then newly introduced to meet expanding needs for high-speed, low-latency video in aviation. The flexibility of ARINC 818 and its capacity to utilise rapidly advancing technologies make it the protocol of choice for high-resolution displays, high-speed sensors, and other critical video systems.

A second generation VPA, introduced last year, added better profile management, pixel-to-data correlation, alternate language support on the GUI, and the ability to determine characteristics of an unknown source. An optional software development kit was also introduced.

Introduction to ARINC 818
The ARINC 818 video interface and protocol standard serves high-bandwidth, low-latency, uncompressed digital video transmission. The standard has been advanced by ARINC and the aerospace community to meet the stringent needs of high-performance digital video. The protocol was adopted, prior to its official release, by major aerospace and military programmes, and has become the de facto standard for high-performance military video systems.

Key features:

  • Low overhead, which allows real time transmission of video signals at high data rates
  • Low latency, which ensures that a head-up display matches a pilot’s visual input
  • Flexibility: the protocol is not tied to any one physical layer or video format.

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