Praxis, AdaCore Launch SPARK Pro for Safety Critical Systems

Developers creating safety critical and high assurance systems will benefit from today’s launch of SPARK Pro. The new open source development environment has been created by Praxis, international specialist in critical systems engineering, and AdaCore, the leading provider of commercial software solutions for the Ada language.

SPARK Pro combines the proven SPARK language and supporting toolset with AdaCore’s easy-to-use GNAT Programming Studio (GPS) Integrated Development Environment, backed by unrivalled support services. This provides a powerful method for developing critical systems.

Developed by Praxis, SPARK is a language specifically designed to support the development of software used in applications where correct operation is vital either for reasons of safety or security. The SPARK Toolset offers static verification that is unrivalled in terms of its soundness, low false-alarm rate, depth and efficiency. The toolset also generates evidence for correctness that can be used to build a constructive assurance case in line with the requirements of industry regulators and certification schemes. There are versions of SPARK based on Ada 83, Ada 95, and Ada 2005, so all leading Ada compilers and tools work out-of-the-box with SPARK.

The new development environment will be globally available from AdaCore, with support delivered by both companies using AdaCore’s web based GNAT Tracker support system. Existing SPARK users have the option to transition to the new environment, which is also available as a standalone product. The launch of SPARK Pro is the first available product following the technical and marketing partnership announced in Q4 2008 between Praxis and AdaCore.

“SPARK continues to be used for the development of new advanced critical systems as well as support of existing operational systems, so it is vital that it continues to develop – SPARK Pro is a major step forward in usability and support through our partnership with AdaCore,” said Keith Williams, Praxis Managing Director. “The launch of SPARK Pro integrates the strengths of the best development tools in the market. Our partnership combines our proven expertise with AdaCore’s user interface, global reach and support systems to deliver the perfect solution for safety and security developers. This is great news for the SPARK language and our existing and future customers.”

“AdaCore and Praxis share a commitment to enabling high quality, high-integrity development,” said Robert Dewar, AdaCore President and CEO. “The launch of SPARK Pro as an open source development environment extends the benefits of SPARK to existing and new GNAT Pro users, enhancing capabilities and advancing the use of the Ada language, particularly in the security market.”

“Praxis has worked with AdaCore for many years and the development of common technology was the next logical step,” said Sylvain Haman, Praxis Director. “SPARK Pro will enable our clients world-wide to ensure correctness of their software while enjoying the convenience of an enhanced development environment.”

Praxis and AdaCore have a long history of working together on high profile systems. These include the Tokeneer project developed by Praxis for the US National Security Agency (NSA) using the SPARK Ada language and toolset and AdaCore GNAT Pro.

SPARK Pro is available now.

A joint webinar between AdaCore and Praxis to discuss the benefits and provide a demonstration of SPARK Pro will be held on 21 April 2009. It will begin at 5pm European Daylight Time/4pm GMT Daylight Time/11am Eastern Daylight Time/8am Pacific Daylight Time. To register please visit https://adacore.webex.com/adacore/onstage/g.php?t=a&d=718810241.

About Praxis
Praxis is a systems engineering company specializing in safety and mission critical applications. Praxis leads the world in specific areas of advanced systems engineering, such as ultra low defect software engineering, safety engineering for complex or novel systems, and tools/methods for systems engineering. Praxis offers clients a range of services including turn-key systems development, consultancy, training and R&D. Key market sectors are Aerospace, Defence, Air Traffic Management, Railways, Nuclear and Automotive. The company operates internationally with active projects in North America, Asia and Europe. The headquarters of Praxis are in Bath (UK) with further offices in London, Loughborough and Paris. It is wholly owned by Altran Technologies, which is a global leader in innovation engineering and has 18, 500 staff across the world.

About AdaCore
Founded in 1994, AdaCore is the leading provider of commercial software solutions for Ada, the state-of-the-art programming language designed for large, long-lived applications where safety, security, and reliability are critical. AdaCore’s flagship product is the GNAT Pro development environment, which comes with expert on-line support and is available on more platforms than any other Ada technology. AdaCore has an extensive world-wide customer base. Ada and GNAT Pro see a growing usage in high-integrity and safety-certified applications, including commercial aircraft avionics, military systems, air traffic management/control, railway systems and medical devices, and in security-sensitive domains such as financial services. AdaCore has North American headquarters in New York and European headquarters in Paris.