Open Systems: Promoting Rapid Deployment of New Innovations in the UAS Market

As we know, open standards and platforms are becoming a top priority for the military branches as it attempts to implement technologies with more rapid innovation cycles.  For the US this is an absolute necessity to keep up with or stay ahead of foreign threats. Last year, officials at DARPA issued a broad agency announcement (DARPA-BAA-14-40) for the System of Systems Integration Technology and Experimentation (SoSITE) program. The program goal is to develop an open system architecture (OSA) for rapid distribution and experimentation of new functionalities across aircraft, weapons, sensors, and mission systems.

The SoSITE OSA is based on the Air Force’s open mission systems (OMS) effort to develop interfaces between mission systems and services connected through an avionics service bus (ASB). These interfaces use open and standardized interface definitions. Once again, this is why MilSource sees Ethernet physical connectivity interface of choice for this and any other program that requires industry-standard, non-propriety architecture and systems.

Congratulations to Northrup Grumman, who last week announced that they have successfully demonstrated the ability to support the OMS architecture on a NASA Global Hawk . Supporting the architecture paves the way for integration of new payload options for Global Hawk to support mission flexibility and customer needs. In addition to flying on the NASA Global Hawk UAS, the OMS architecture will be adapted and demonstrated in-flight on a manned airborne weapons system later this month.