Military embedded systems suppliers must re-set their sights on UAVs, C4ISR applications

NATICK, Mass., 17 June 2009. Embedded computing suppliers need to re-adjust their priorities on applications involving infantry soldiers, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), network centric systems, as well as command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR), say market analysts at VDC Research in Natick, Mass.

Jun 17th, 2009

NATICK, Mass., 17 June 2009.Embedded computing suppliers need to re-adjust their priorities on applications involving infantry soldiers, unmanned vehicle technology, network centric systems, as well as command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR), say market analysts at VDC Research in Natick, Mass.

These applications represent the kinds of military embedded systems and technologies that the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) will pursue in President Barack Obama's administration, VDC analysts say.

Obama Administration priorities will include embedded computer products for platforms such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and anything related to military communications, as well as the applications within these such as signal processing and packet processing, VDC analysts say, adding that DOD is moving away from applications like missiles radar for aircraft, and sonar for surface warships that are get funding.

"A downturn for the embedded military COTS industry does not seem likely, however major change does seem inevitable," VDC analysts say in their report "The Effect of the New Administration on Embedded Military COTS."

"If your business is radar systems for large airborne platforms, you need to figure out how to get into the high density, lower-power, intense thermal management requirement, C4ISR platforms for UAVs," VDC tells military embedded systems providers. "Align with the architectures best suited to satisfy those applications even if it means a significant shift to architectures that were less important in a less network-centric world."

Although the 2010 DOD budget proposes increases over 2009, some weapon systems cuts and cancellations are on the table, such as the F-22 jet fighter and the Airborne Laser system, VDC officials say. "A downturn for the embedded military COTS industry does not seem likely, however major change does seem inevitable."

Embedded processor suppliers should focus effort on supporting the best high-bandwidth, communications architectures such as VPX, ATCA, MicroTCA, bladed server architectures, and plain old rack mount servers, VDC analysts say.

For more information contact VDC online at www.vdcresearch.com.

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