(San Jose, Ca., April 2, 2007) -- Real-Time Innovations (RTI), The Real-Time Middleware Experts, announced today that its real-time messaging middleware has been selected for use by Insitu Inc., a pioneer developer of long-endurance, unmanned autonomous aircraft (UAV). RTI's technology will be used in Insitu's next generation of unmanned air vehicles, including the company's next-generation ScanEagle and newer platforms.
Insitu is using RTI Data Distribution Service in multiple portions of platforms, such as on the UAV, in the ground control stations (GCSs) and in future air-to-ground communications. On the UAV airframe, RTI connects the flight computers, sensors and on-board application computers. Within the GCS, RTI connects the systems that decode data feeds, analyze the UAV's situation and interface to the operator control.
UAVs serve increasingly strategic roles in a broad range of applications, including military reconnaissance, border patrol and search missions. A successful UAV mission requires both impressive autonomy and reliable ground-control. UAVs are by far the fastest-growing segment of the aeronautics industry.
Insitu's newly designed distributed software architecture allows developers to put much more intelligence on the airplane. The design leverages RTI's message bus to implement a hierarchical control network with well controlled data-flows. The information flow is now much more orchestrated and flexible than in Insitu's previous designs. For instance, this allows Insitu to seamlessly switch control between multiple GCSs and to reliably connect to an aircraft even over unreliable links.
Using commercially available middleware also saves Insitu significant time and effort. Gary Viviani, vice president of Software Engineering at Insitu said, "Historically, we've had multiple people working on communications; it was a dominating activity for our platform. Despite that, transferring data was the source of many of our problems and most of our consternation. Now, with minimal resources, we have seen at least a 30 percent increase in productivity by using RTI middleware for data communication." Viviani continued, "We stress-tested RTI's middleware during our evaluation. We now have significant development under our belts, and so far there's no hint of an issue. It has performed well with very low processor utilization. We also give top marks to RTI's services and support teams."
"Insitu is a recognized leader in the exploding UAV industry," said Stan Schneider, chief executive officer at RTI. "Insitu is developing a highly capable, reliable air vehicle at a low cost. We are impressed with Insitu's dedication to excellence in aviation design. We look forward to a strong partnership in flight systems."