The tech multinational GMV was awarded the contract for the design, development, manufacture and logistical support of the ground-based flight control computer (GFCC) of the Eurodrone program. It will provide AIRBUS with a reliable and safety-critical computer to direct and control Eurodrone UAS.
The Eurodrone program is undoubtedly one of the most important European defense cooperation programs at the moment.. Eurodrone, which came into existence through a European Council agreement in December 2013, has as its main objective to provide partner countries with a strategic/operational system with state-of-the-art Joint Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (JISR) capabilities. This requires a UAS or drone capable of reaching an altitude of 13 km, a maximum speed of 500 km/h and a maximum flight time of between 18 and 40 hours depending on the mission profile.
The GFCC is a safety-critical DAL-A system responsible for managing the flight orders that the operator in charge of the SAU (the DUO) sends to it, as well as displaying system information so that the DUO has accurate information and can fulfill its mission. The Eurodrone was designed to perform flights in non-segregated airspace. To ensure that the Eurodrone complies with strict security measures, several GFCCs are installed in each of the ground control stations (GCS). Each GFCC has multiple boards, both COTS and custom-designed, in a 19-inch rack. GMV will be responsible for the manufacture of the equipment and the validation campaigns during which debugging tests will be carried out.
One of the tasks to be carried out by GMV will be to adapt the BSP, the FPGAs and the drivers so that the boards comply with the new requirements and can obtain the DO-178C and DO-254 DAL-A certificates. This contract represents a major step forward in the consolidation of GMV as a reference supplier of critical aeronautical systems.