PrismTech Supports Teledyne Brown Engineering on the Objective Simulation Framework

PrismTech’s OpenSplice DDS selected to provide high performance, real-time data sharing capabilities for the Objective Simulation Framework

Boston, MA, USA – March 17, 2014 – PrismTech™, a global leader in standards-based, performance-critical middleware, today announced that its data sharing software will be incorporated in the Objective Simulation Framework (OSF) which is being developed by Teledyne Brown Engineering, Inc. for the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Missile Defense Agency (MDA).

Teledyne Brown Engineering is the Prime Contractor for the development, implementation and maintenance of the OSF, the backbone of the next-generation missile defense hardware-in-the-loop (HWIL) and digital modeling and simulation architecture.  Specifically, the OSF is a single-inclusive, modular, scalable, reconfigurable, and composable framework for integrating multiple-instanced systems and system-level models and simulations (M&S), with each instance composed and executed independently or in an integrated and interoperable manner.

The OSF will provide the MDA with a flexible M&S architecture configurable to support all applications, including Performance Assessment (PA), Ground Test (GT), Element Integration (EI), Exercises (EX), Training (TR), Wargames (WG), and Concept Analysis (CA).

PrismTech’s OpenSplice™ DDS is the leading (commercial and Open Source) implementation of the Object Management Group™’s (OMG™) Data Distribution Service (DDS) for Real-Time Systems standard.  OpenSplice DDS has been designed to optimally address the real-time information distribution and management challenges posed by high performance real-time simulations.  It sets new levels of performance, robustness, scalability, fault-tolerance, portability (platform support) and interoperability for standard’s based middleware.

OpenSplice DDS enables the OSF to easily share data in real-time between any combination of Live, Virtual and Constructive (LVC) elements in a system and in doing so helps users to realize the savings and performance benefits that can be achieved by using the framework.

“PrismTech is delighted by Teledyne Brown’s selection of OpenSplice DDS for the OSF project,” said Keith Steele, CEO, PrismTech.  “We are extremely pleased that our continued efforts in developing the best in class technology for ubiquitous, high-performance, scalable and real-time data sharing is helping users meet the demanding requirements for the next generation of M&S systems.”

OpenSplice DDS in Coordinated Multirobot Missions for Lunar Sample Collection

PrismTech recently announced that NASA had selected OpenSplice DDS to help make Star Trek inspired Holodeck Technologies a reality. Following on from this I would like to highlight in my blog another space related project which is using OpenSplice DDS called IMPERA (integrated mission planning using heterogeneous robots).

The main goal of IMPERA is the development of a multirobot planning and execution architecture with a focus on a lunar sample collection scenario in an unknown environment. For future lunar and other planetary missions, autonomy is mandatory. Current NASA missions deal mainly with the exploration of the Mars surface and the analysis of the surface consistency. The systems Spirit, Opportunity, and Curiosity work as individual systems. Looking toward the future, it is a subsequent step to set up infrastructure and scientific components on Mars or on the moon. This infrastructure can consist of small stations measuring environmental conditions, units that are used to provide drill cores for subsurface analysis, or units for communication and energy supply.

Building infrastructure and interacting with infrastructure during a planetary mission calls for multirobot systems and coordination between multiple systems, each system having dedicated sensors and roles during a mission. If robots need to cooperate in a multirobot context, it is important to know how such a team of robots can exchange their knowledge about the world in terms of a world model, how to generate a mission plan, and how to execute a plan using robots with different abilities and configurations.

For the IMPERA project PrismTech’s OpenSplice DDS implementation of the Data Distribution Service for Real-Time Systems standard was chosen as the communcations middleware. OpenSplice DDS is ideally suited for the IMPERA project as it is based on the loosely coupled publish subscribe paradignm and provides extensive quality of service (QoS) options such as automatic reconnection and data buffering in the case of communication loss. The DDS communication middleware helps to ensure that each robot has the same knowledge about the internal status of each individual robot.

For further details about the IMPERA project, a Journal of Field Robotics paper titled “Towards Coordinated Multirobot Missions for Lunar Sample Collection in an Unknown Environment” authored by Markus Eich, Ronny Hartanto, Sebastian Kasperski, Sankaranarayanan Natarajan, and Johannes Wollenberg of DFKI, Robotics Innovation Center, Bremen, Germany is Now Available.

Evaluating and Benchmarking OpenSplice Enterprise

One of the key differentiators of PrismTech’s OpenSplice Enterprise is that it provides a user with the ability to choose exactly how to deploy Data Distribution Service for Real-Time Systems (DDS) applications, i.e. there are different DDS system architecture deployment modes and also different networking service protocols. This allows a user to maximize both intra-nodal and inter-nodal performance based on requirements specific to their own use case.

When evaluating OpenSplice Enterprise it is very important to understand all of these features and benefits to ensure that the most appropriate combination is evaluated against your specific performance criteria. Once the performance figures have been observed the choice is usually clear.

Every customer use case and set of requirements is different, so to help with your evaluation and benchmarking, PrismTech has produced a new guide “Evaluating and Benchmarking OpenSplice Enterprise”. You can access the guide Here.

The guide takes you through how to best deploy OpenSplice Enterprise so that it meets and exceeds your expectations. It explains how easy it is to get started with OpenSplice Enterprise and observe the excellent performance and scalability it provides. OpenSplice Enterprise is even shipped with dedicated performance tests that the user can build and run easily.

Note that this guide serves only as an introduction and does not replace the full OpenSplice Enterprise reference and user guides at: http://www.prismtech.com/opensplice/resources/documentation.

Boeing selects PrismTech’s OpenSplice DDS for US Air Force open mission systems project

OpenSplice DDS provides ubiquitous, high performance, scalable and real-time data sharing for mission-critical systems

Boston, MA, USA – November 7, 2013 – PrismTech™, a global leader in standards-based, performance-critical middleware, today announced that it is working with Boeing on an open mission systems project, sponsored by the US Air Force (USAF).  PrismTech is providing its OpenSplice™ DDS product line for the development and deployment of a Boeing high performance open systems messaging middleware.

PrismTech’s OpenSplice DDS is the leading (commercial and Open Source) implementation of the Object Management Group™’s (OMG™) Data Distribution Service (DDS) for Real-Time Systems standard.  OpenSplice DDS has been designed to optimally address the real-time information distribution and management challenges posed by high performance real-time data-processing systems.  OpenSplice DDS sets new levels of performance, robustness, scalability, fault-tolerance and portability (platform support).

“The utilization of DDS in the premier open architecture (OA) activity in the US Air Force, once again, shows the key role played by DDS in enabling high-performance, reconfigurable and expandable systems that are easier and more affordable to upgrade,” said Angelo Corsaro, PhD, CTO, PrismTech.  “We are delighted by Boeing’s selection of OpenSplice as the DDS implementation for their portion of this important OA effort; at the same time we are extremely pleased that our continued effort in developing the best in class technology for ubiquitous, high performance, scalable and real-time data sharing is helping companies to build better systems.”

Further information about OpenSplice DDS is available from PrismTech’s website at: http://www.prismtech.com/vortex/vortex-opensplice.

The Adoption of Operational Technologies in Simulation

Simulation and Operational Technologies have historically evolved in isolation and with very little cross-fertilization. This has led to a divergence of technologies and skills along with the necessity for ad hoc integration of simulation and operational systems.

This situation is rapidly changing due to a convergence of the simulation community towards operational technologies such as the Object Management Group’s (OMG) Data Distribution Service for Real-Time Systems (DDS). In this blog post I will summarize the motivations behind this convergence and provide quantitative indications, when data is available, of the induced benefits.

Performance and Scalability. Simulation technologies such as High Level Architecture (HLA), Distributed Interactive Simulation (DIS), Test and Training Enabling Architecture (TENA) have proven to be the bottleneck when building advanced real-time simulations or large-scale simulations. Performance and scalability is one of the top reasons why several simulation groups across large systems integrators, as well as companies specializing in simulation, have adopted DDS as their underlying data bus.  Performance improvements have been measured up to a factor 2x while through adopting the DDS fully distributed architecture they have achieved linear scalability!

Integration with Operational Systems. With the rising importance of co-simulation it becomes critical that simulations and operational systems can seamlessly interact. This means two things. First, it should be possible to  “inter-connect” the simulated and the real systems without having to develop specific adaptors. Second, the simulated system should  “keep the pace” of the operational system. As DDS is a mandated standard for several operational systems, the convergence towards DDS eliminates the need for bridging – thus eliminating the cost of integration. In addition this convergence provides users with a level of performance that is compatible with operational systems and a plug-and-play co-simulation architecture.

Market and Vendors. The operational technology market is bigger and more competitive than the simulation market, as such it provides higher quality technology at more modest prices when compared with the niche simulation market. In addition the number of vendors of DDS along with the number of Open Source offerings surpasses by several times that of a typical simulation standard or technology. This competitive scenario is thus more favorable to the user (please refer to the Porter Five Forces Scheme http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Porter_five_forces_analysis) as it increases bargaining power and lowers the overall cost of software procurement throughout its lifetime. In addition, the competitive landscape means that vendors need to continually innovate in order to gain market share thus providing end-users with top-notch technologies and tools.

Skills and Productivity. Another important reason why companies are converging toward Operational Technologies is because it is easier for them to find and retain competent engineers as well as to more easily reassign their workforce. In addition, operational technologies such as DDS have proven to improve the productivity, over technologies such as HLA, by 2-3x for just the development phase.

For those interested in some futher technical details, the following resources are are available:

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OpenSplice Mobile – DDS has never been so much fun

Today we have released OpenSplice Mobile v1.1 and, as I’ll describe in this post, it brings DDS to a new level of usability and coolness!

To begin with, OpenSplice Mobile is a pure-Java implementation of DDS, meaning that you can run it on anything that has a Java VM, an embedded Java VM, or an Android VM. In essence, you can run OpenSplice Mobile on your Android phone / tablet, on your Raspberry Pi, on your Panda Board, etc., or simply on a more traditional computing platform, e.g. a server, a workstation or laptop. BTW, I have actually already demonstrated this as some of you may have seen at the Berlin OpenSplice User Meeting a couple of weeks ago.

At this point you may wonder how the same DDS implementation may be a good fit for both resource constrained embedded devices as well as high-end servers with multiple cores — the trick is OpenSplice Mobile SEDA (Staged Event Driven Architecture). By configuring the stages in the SEDA you can optimize OpenSplice Mobile for latency and embedded devices or for throughput and high-end servers. The configuration can be controlled via a property file or a series of “-D” options for the JVM.

Those of you that can’t wait to start hacking with OpenSplice Mobile, will be happy to know that it provides the new Java 5 API for DDS. This new API removes quite a bit of nonsense of the previous Java API and enforces a disciplined class loading — in essence you can control the class loader that will be loading classes for the DDS types. If that was not enough to wet your appetite, we have added a few cool features such as the ability to express queries and filters using Java and JavaScript.  This means that to query/filter DDS data you are not limited to what can be expressed by the WHERE clause of a SQL statement, you have the power of a predicate written in Java or in JavaScript! If you wonder about lambdas, we will obviously add support for the JDK8 version, yet at the present time OpenSplice Mobile requires a JDK6.

At this point , assuming you’ve written your first OpenSplice Mobile application and you would like to see its runtime structure —  you’d love to explore the jungle of DDS entities. How can you do that? OpenSplice Mobile has a Monitor that gives access to all information concerning the DDS entities as well as the protocol entities. With the Monitor you can browse DDS entities, verify QoS settings, check the status of reliability queues etc. (see snapshot below). If you have looked at the Mobile distribution you may wonder how you start it. Things could not be any simpler, you just have to make sure that the monitor Jar is in the Java classpath and then simply point your browser to http://localhost:8080 (or the URL of the machine where you want to inspect the DDS app). If the port 8080 is taken the monitor will automatically take the first free, e.g. 8081, or 8082 etc.

OpenSplice Mobile Graphic

Now, if you have not done so already, go and get OpenSplice Mobile from our Software Downloads and start hacking some code!

Good Hacking,
Angelo

P.S. If you want to play with the OpenSplice Mobile iShapes application on your Android device you can get it from the Google Play Store

The OpenSplice Community Edition v6.3 is Coming

I’m really pleased to announce that our very latest OpenSplice code base (v6.3) will be made available to the Open Source community on July 8 2013.

OpenSplice Community Edition v6.3 features many innovations and improvements:

  • DDS ISO C++ API: The DDS ISO C++ API is the new standard API for programming DDS applications in C++. This new API immensely improves usability, safety and efficiency along with feeling far more idiomatic to a C++ programmer. It is important to say that the DDS ISO C++ API draws most of its concepts from two Open Source projects that we have been running, namely simd-cxx (code.google.com/p/simd-cxx) and Escalier  (github.com/kydos/escalier).
  • Standalone Deployment. OpenSplice Community v6.3 introduces support for the stand-alone deployment mode which along with the latest DDSI v2.1 implementation, enabling a greatly enhanced ‘zero-configuration’ out-of-the-box experience.
  • Fixes and Improvements. Numerous improvements and updates have been made to the code base since OpenSplice v5.5 (the previous Community Edition release), including performance, footprint, robustness as well as  several bug fixes.

The FAQs available at http://www.prismtech.com/opensplice/opensplice-dds-community/frequently-asked-questions should hopefully answer most of the questions about the new Community Edition release.

A Webcast covering the details of the release will be presented on July 30 2013.  To register for the Webcast please visit http://www.prismtech.com/webcast-signup.

Mark the July 8 2013 on your calendar and happy hacking with the new OpenSplice Community – I am sure you’ll love it!

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