Bell Selects Rapita for Invictus 360 FARA Project

Rapita Systems was selected to perform multicore verification for the Invictus 360’s Data Concentrator Unit. The Invictus 360, part of the U.S. Army’s Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) Competitive Prototype program, is an innovative, high-performance aircraft that utilizes the latest technologies, including complex multicore processors that require specialist verification and validation expertise to certify.

“We are delighted to have been selected by Bell to provide an end-to-end certification service for a key component on this impressive, next-generation aircraft,” said Nick Bowles, marketing manager at Rapita Systems. “Our CAST-32A Compliance solution is a unique commercial solution for certifying complex multicore avionics systems. The solution is being rapidly adopted by both civil and defense avionics suppliers, like Bell, who need to leverage the benefits of modern multicore processors to meet the demands of next generation avionics systems.”

Bell’s DCU is being developed in accordance with the Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE) standard to deliver increased modularity and lower implementation costs for the U.S. Army. Under FACE, the Safety, Safety-Extended and Security Profiles all require an ARINC 653 partitioned RTOS. FACE does not explicitly require assurance that these isolation mechanisms are robust, but when developing to DO-178C guidelines, the additional objectives of CAST-32A/A(M)C 20-193 do require such assurance of robustness. Rapita’s CAST-32A Compliance solution will support both CAST-32A compliance and FACE conformance (assuring robustness of partitioning) for the project, ensuring that the Bell 360 is equipped to safely deliver on the promise of the FARA program.

Data Concentrator Units (DCUs) are modular sensor interface units that actively collect and convert analog flight data to and from the Vehicle Management System (VMS) and Health Usage Monitoring System (HUMS). The Bell Invictus 360 DCU is based on North Atlantic Industries SIU36 system.

Rapita Systems’ CAST-32A Compliance solution provides a complete solution for certifying multicore aerospace projects in accordance with CAST-32A guidance. Custom packages support different roles in the avionics supply chain, including those of Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) System Integrators, Platform Suppliers and Application Suppliers.

The solution is made up of a combination of mature software tools, documents, processes and expert services. The Rapita Verification Suite is used to apply tests to multicore hardware using RapiTest, RapiTime and RapiTask. RapiDaemons are used to generate targeted contention on specific hardware resources such as buses, caches and GPUs.

These tools are complemented by a range of documents, tests and processes that enable avionics suppliers to achieve certification following DO-178C and CAST-32A guidance.