Navy Burke-class destroyers enhance situational awareness with RGB system

By John McHale

ALAMEDA, Calif. - The U.S. Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class (DDG 51) guided-missile destroyers are employing multi-image display processors to improve the situational awareness communication capability aboard ship.

The destroyers’ new Integrated Video Data Distribution System (IVDDS) upgrade uses QuadView multi image display processors from RGB Spectrum in Alameda, Calif., to view real-time sensor data and video imagery in multiple locations throughout the ship.

“The feedback from commanding officers has been excellent,” says Michael Prokosch, IVDDS Project Lead at the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Port Hueneme, Calif. “The system is able to integrate and display more images to personnel with exceptional image quality. The QuadView-based system has met our objective, significantly improving shipboard situational awareness.”

The Burke-class destroyers primarily are for detecting, tracking, and destroying enemy aircraft, surface ships, and submarines, and have an expanded role in striking land targets, Prokosch says.

“The Aegis Command and Decision System receives data from ship and external sensors via satellite communications and provides command, control and threat assessment,” he continues. “The latest Aegis, Baseline 7.1 and 7.1R, includes the COTS (commercial-off-the-shelf) IVDDS to improve situational awareness throughout the ship rather than just one or two locations on the ship. A key component in the IVDDS upgrade is RGB Spectrum’s QuadView multi-image display processor. Using IVDDS, we can now integrate multiple visuals from a variety of disparate sources, and distribute and display them in real time to multiple locations throughout the ship.”

U.S. Navy’s Burke-class destroyers are improving situational awareness with RGB Spectrum’s QuadView technology.
Click here to enlarge image

The QuadView processor is installed in the ship’s combat information center as part of the IVDDS. The processor receives feeds from Aegis close-in threat sensors, FLIR (forward-looking infrared), and live video from six cameras affixed at various locations throughout the ship.

Operators choose from a selection of switched inputs, then each processor merges up to four of the incoming sources and outputs a combined image for each screen. Prokosch continues, “The QuadViews’ multi-image display capability provides personnel with a powerful ability to view more information simultaneously.”

The QuadView four-window images are distributed to 14 flat-panel displays as well as two large-screen projection units located throughout the ship, including the Pilot House, the Combat Information Center, the Officer’s Wardroom, and the Commanding Officer’s cabin, displayed at 1280-by-1024-pixel resolution.

The QuadView offers limitless display configurations to provide display flexibility, RGB officials say. Images can be any size, from postage stamp to full screen, and positioned and moved anywhere on screen. Each image can be zoomed and panned to focus on a particular area of interest. Functions are controlled using the QuadView’s embedded GUI browser-based interface. Preprogrammed display configurations can be recalled at the push of a button.

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