Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division announced that it is collaborating with Green Hills Software and Richland Technologies to demonstrate the industry’s first COTS-based rugged Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE) aligned multicore solutions for critical and high-assurance systems.

The live demonstration (Green Hills booth: Booth #37) will show the Green Hills field-proven INTEGRITY-178 tuMP™ safety-critical and security-critical multicore real-time operating system (RTOS) running safety critical graphics applications using Richland Technologies RTGL OpenGL SC graphics libraries on Curtiss-Wright’s NXP-based VPX3-133 single board computer (SBC) and the VPX3-716 graphics display module.

This solution enables system designers to very carefully control which application is running on which SBC core and when. For certified and non-certified environments, this capability uniquely provides users with the utmost deterministic control over their processor’s set of cores at any instant in time. This combination of INTEGRITY-178 tuMP and RTGL running on Curtiss-Wright COTS hardware enables customers to utilise the full power of their multicore processor in a deterministic certified environment.

"For system integrators who require FACE-aligned avionics solutions, the tight integration of the RTGL OpenGL SC graphics libraries with the INTEGRITY-178 tuMP RTOS enables users of Curtiss-Wright SBCs based on NXP processors to utilise all available compute power," said Lynn Bamford, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Defense Solutions division.

"The combination of INTEGRITY-178 tuMP and Richland’s graphics libraries enable system designers to take full advantage of all of the SBC’s available QorIQ cores, including virtual cores, all based on deterministic, user-defined core and scheduling assignments."

Because this unified multicore OS enables users to place applications on a specific core, or user-defined groups of cores, at specific instants of time, INTEGRITY-178 tuMP running on Curtiss-Wright OpenVPX modules eliminates the risk of interference from shared resources.

Alternative approaches that combine a hypervisor with multiple AMP operating systems don’t enable users to control application scheduling across all of the processor’s cores, unlike a unified multicore operating system. This is because each of the AMP operating systems is running independently, with no centralised point of scheduling to prevent collisions resulting from resource sharing. These conflicts can require the processor to throttle down to a single core, reducing performance and degrading reliability.

In comparison, the Curtiss-Wright / Green Hills demonstration uses time partitioning and a single unified RTOS operating system running across all cores. For stringent safety certifiable applications this enables worst-case time execution to be accurately calculated and proven.

Green Hills is the only RTOS supplier to have successfully completed all of the RTCA / DO-178B Level A certification requirements for its multicore RTOS, including guidance in the CAST-32A Position Paper. Curtiss-Wright, by combining Green Hills Software’s industry-leading software certification expertise with its own RTCA / DO-254 hardware development and verification process, is now able to deliver one of the industry’s first DO-254 certifiable COTS multicore SBCs that support the RTCA / DO-178B Level A-compliant INTEGRITY-178 tuMP multicore RTOS.

Designed using an RTCA / DO-254 design process from the beginning of the development cycle, Curtiss-Wright’s safety-certifiable multicore processor SBCs provide system designers with a complete COTS hardware / software solution for their avionics systems.

To speed and ease the safety certification process, an RTCA / DO-254 data artifact package for each SBC and a certifiable board support package (BSP) with RTCA / DO-178 artifacts for the multicore RTOS, will be available. Curtiss-Wright and Green Hills also plan to announce support for INTEGRITY-178 tuMP RTOS on the DO-254 safety certifiable VPX3-152 SBC in the second quarter of 2017, as well as the DO-254 safety certifiable Intel Xeon based VPX3-1220 SBC in this year’s third quarter.

The demo also features Richland Technologies portfolio of DO-178C certifiable OpenGL SC graphics libraries running under INTEGRITY-178 tuMP on Curtiss-Wright’s COTS hardware. The versatility of display systems design based on this approach is demonstrated by rendering complex 3D scenes using the RTGL hardware accelerated OpenGL SC libraries for the AMD™ e8860-based Curtiss-Wright VPX3-716 graphics module, while simultaneously using the RTGL SoftPipe rasterizer library on a separate core cluster to render the highest Design Assurance Level graphics without the need for the GPU.

Finally, the RTGL Hybrid Renderer provides a flexible mechanism to deterministically merge multiple graphics pipelines. Richland’s RTGL OpenGL SC libraries offer the flexibility to support a wide range of SBC and graphics hardware architectures. Curtiss-Wright will be supporting RTCA / DO-254 safety certifiable graphics on similar e8860 based VPX3-717 and VPX3-719 graphics modules.