Northrop rolls out open architecture cockpit technology for multiple platforms

26 June 2014 (Last Updated June 26th, 2014 18:30)

Northrop Grumman is integrating its new cockpit technology and open architecture design in its fixed and rotary-wing platforms.

Northrop Grumman is integrating its new cockpit technology and open architecture design in its fixed and rotary-wing platforms.

Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems Situational Awareness vice-president Ike Song said that the company's avionics offer enhanced performance, while lowering life-cycle costs.

"By incorporating the latest open architecture technology into our mission equipment package, which is highly open and upgradeable, we have achieved a system architecture that protects the government's investment over the long haul for multiple platforms," Song said.

"Next-generation FlightPro Gen III mission computers, which feature the latest computing technology in multiple partitioned, eight-core PowerPC-based processors, will power the cockpits."

The open architecture design enables integration into multiple platforms, including the AH-64D/E Apache, H-60L Black Hawk and CH-47D/F Chinook helicopters, through a single software package.

Northrop makes use of model-based designs for operational flight programme software, which is compatible with the new DO178C standards, and facilitates easy replication of the pilot vehicle interface on multiple platforms, further simplifying aircrew training and the shift between multiple aircraft types.

Furthermore, the future airborne capability environment (FACE) compliant avionics system enables rapid capability integration, while lowering costs and risk for system integration and upgrades.

Next-generation FlightPro Gen III mission computers, which feature the latest computing technology in multiple partitioned, eight-core PowerPC-based processors, will power the cockpits.

Installed in the UH1Y Venom and AH1Z Viper platforms under the US Marine Corps H-1 upgrade programme, the combat-proven FlightPro mission computer is expected to be integrated into all of the Marine Corps' future production fleet.

Northrop has already demonstrated the proposed design for the US Army's H-60L Black Hawk digital cockpit upgrade on a UH-60L helicopter.

Defence Technology