Navy underwater warfare experts choose legacy memory PMC cards from GE for torpedo research

Posted by John Keller

NEWPORT, R.I., 29 Aug. 2013. U.S. Navy underwater warfare experts needed legacy CompactFLASH memory adaptor circuit cards to support underwater testing of torpedoes and other undersea weapons. They found their solution from GE Intelligent Platforms in Huntsville, Ala.

Officials of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) in Newport, R.I., announced their intention to award a sole-source contract to GE for 20 of the company's PMCF2 PCI mezzanine card (PMC) for embedded computing necessary for underwater testing. The value of the contract has yet to be negotiated.

The PMCF2 is the only supported device that meets the Navy's interface requirement, Navy officials say. Acquisition is time-critical to support efforts related to in-water runs. Any other circuit card board will not be compatible with the current torpedo software, officials say.

NUWC Newport is the Navy's primary center for research in submarine warfare systems and undersea warfare. The major thrust of NUWC Newport is applied research and system development. The organization operates detachments at West Palm Beach, Fla., and Andros Island in the Bahamas, and remote test facilities at Seneca Lake and Fisher's Island, N.Y., and at Dodge Pond, Conn.

Using any memory-based PMC other than GE PMCF2 would require an extensive weapon software redevelopment plan that would span several years and cost the Navy millions of dollars, officials say. GE is the sole manufacturer and sole retailer of these cards.

The PMCF2 was introduced in 1999 by Radstone Technology in Towcester, England. GE acquired Radstone in 2006. The PMCF2 is a rugged commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) IEEE 1386.1-compliant PMC that originally were designed in five ruggedization levels for military and industrial applications.

The PMC is designed for applications that require rugged, solid state, non-volatile memory storage, such as data logging, secure mission data, or application code storage. CompactFLASH enables users to install and remove key data quickly and easily when necessary.

The PMCF2 provides eight megabytes of CompactFLASH, which the user can upgrade by replacing the factory fitted CompactFLASH card with others available on the open market.

The PMCF2 use a single-width PMC slot and weighs less than 90 grams. An ejector mechanism is fitted on the module to enable users to eject the CompactFLASH device through the front panel. The device is held in place by a removable retaining clip.

For more information contact GE Intelligent Platforms online at www.ge-ip.com/, or NUWC Newport at www.navsea.navy.mil/nuwc/newport.

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