Venture Development Corporation Publishes Embedded COTS Systems Report

Demand for standards-based, merchant, embedded COTS computer boards and systems in military/aerospace/defense applications continues to grow across a wide range of missions, applications and platforms. These products are showing strength in both North America and Europe over the next two years according to a new research report on the market released by VDC.

As part of this research, VDC interviewed purchasers of both embedded COTS boards and integrated systems. The purchasers – defense contractors, system integrators, and integrated OEMs – were asked to identify the electronics mission classifications (specific applications), platforms and programs for which they were using the embedded military COTS boards or systems they purchased. In most cases, not all the information was available. However, mission classification generally was available.

The chart below exhibits the electronics mission classifications supported by the standards-based, embedded COTs boards and systems purchased by the survey respondents.

VDC Embedded COTS Systems in Military, Aerospace, and Defense Applications

VDC’s recently released study on Embedded COTS Systems in Military, Aerospace, and Defense Applications confirmed that embedded COTS systems are becoming increasingly network-centric.

This represents a new age in military electronics shaped by Future Combat Systems (FCS) and a host of related initiatives – all driven by changing mission profiles. Among the new hard requirements is that installed and greenfield platforms are integrated, or at least networked with a broader range of individuals, wheeled and tracked fleets, aircraft – manned and unmanned, ships – surface and undersea, and the complete range of command and control centers.

Many military/aerospace systems that previously did not require embedded computers now require them to enable this communication.

A second demand driver for enhanced, standards-based embedded computing and communications platforms is the demand for additional signal acquisition, conversion, processing and transmission. Many deployed systems that did not carry these requirements has limited – or no – general-purpose embedded computing and communications platform. Early UAVs with radar and image acquisition and processing, may now have more sophisticated C4ISR requirements. The embedded platforms in those UAVs now require a more powerful – or entirely new addition embedded computing/ communications platform to support the new signal processing as well as the higher level of communication.

This new set of requirements has transformed the embedded COTS market by regenerating demand for a number of stable, standards-based COTs embedded computing architectures – and their latest generation(s).

VME has risen to the occasion with the VXS and VPX/VPX-REDI architectures that combine high-speed switch fabrics with the ruggedness and reliability of VME. Military communication applications are already generating real demand for VXS and VPX boards and integrated systems.

Network-centric military equipment is also driving interest in MicroTCA, an architecture that has the advantage of having been created for telecom/datacom applications and thus nicely meets network-centric requirements.

Venture Development Corporation (VDC) is an independent technology market research and strategy consulting firm that specializes in a number of industrial, embedded, component, retail automation, RFID, AIDC, datacom/telecom, and defense markets. VDC has been operating since 1971, when the firm was founded by graduates of the Harvard Business School and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Today, we employ a talented collection of analysts and consultants who offer a rare combination of expertise in the market research process; experience in technology product and program management; and formal training in engineering and marketing. VDC’s clients include thousands of the largest and fastest-growing technology suppliers in the world and the most successful investors participating in the markets we cover.