General Dynamics chooses embedded computing and networking from GE for Scout SV armored combat vehicle

TOWCESTER, England, 13 June 2012. Vetronics designers at General Dynamics UK Ltd. in London needed rugged embedded computers and rugged Ethernet networking switches for the Scout Specialist Vehicle (SV) that General Dynamics is designing for the British Army. They found their solution from GE Intelligent Platforms in Towcester, England.

GE announced a $5 million order Tuesday from General Dynamics for rugged processors derived from GE's MAGIC1 and SBC624 single-board computer and rugged Ethernet switches derived from GE's GBX460 (story continues below).

General Dynamics needs the embedded computing and data networking equipment for the Scout SV demonstration phase. Scout SV is a ground vehicle with an open-systems architecture of sensors networked on Gigabit Ethernet intelligent open architecture for intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance (ISTAR) applications.

The scout's onboard networked sensors and computers will enable the vehicle to capture, analyze, manipulate, and store and share more than 6 terabytes of intelligence data, including still images and video. Scout SV crews will provide commanders with decision-making support now available only from manned and unmanned ISTAR aircraft.

The GE-provided subsystems will provide information processing, manage on-vehicle networks, control data storage, and drive the vehicle's displays.

The rugged small form factor MAGIC1 display computer combines CPU technology with graphics processing units (GPUs). It uses the NVIDIA GT 240 GPU, and provides full access to General Purpose computing on Graphics Processing Units (GPGPU) computing.

The MAGIC1 offers an Intel Core 2 Duo or a dual core Freescale 8641D microprocessor. System memory is two banks of dual-data-rate SDRAM, with capacity to 4 gigabytes. Graphics memory is arranged in two banks and the GPU connects to the CPU through a dedicated 16-lane PCI Express link.

The SBC624 OpenVPX rugged single-board computer, meanwhile, uses the Intel 2nd Generation Core i7 processor with integrated graphics and memory controller and dual or quad core processing to 2.5 GHz for I/O bandwidth for on-board and offboard functions.

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The Scout SV more than doubles the stand-off range at which crew members can identify and study targets from the ground, General Dynamics officials say. The vehicle has 24-hour all-weather surveillance capability and can detect and identify targets in undergrowth, fast unmanned aerial vehicles, and cloud-masked helicopters.

Scout SV can loiter almost indefinitely in a concealed and quiet mode with its mission systems, powered by its quiet auxiliary power unit. The Scout SV has 20-gigabit-per-second Ethernet networking, acoustic detection, far-target thermal sights, and local situational awareness sensors, as well as seven pairs of road wheels on each side.

The first Scout Trial vehicle is currently scheduled to be issued to the British Army's Armoured Trials Development Unit in January 2013. For more information contact GE Intelligent Platforms online at www.ge-ip.com, or General Dynamics UK at www.generaldynamics.uk.com.

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