Vehicle Systems Integration
: Defining Vetronics Mission-Critical Systems

  • Kyriakos Houliotis

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    Vetronics (vehicle electronics) systems have evolved for many years to integrate different electronic components and provide reliable services in most applications related to vehicles. Reliable vehicle services are primarily defined within the safety and security domains and are well documented and standardised (e.g. IEC 61508, ISO 26262, RTCA DO-178B and ISO/IEC 27001) within critical systems design cycles. However, in defence, systems that are critical to the success of a mission are not defined within the literature nor are there any guidelines in defining criticality in their design or operational capabilities. When it comes to Vetronics, a Mission-Critical system, is a system with much complexity and mixed criticality levels that are a part of the overall platform (military vehicle) offering reliably integrated system capabilities.

    Therefore, the aim of this research is to provide a novel framework focusing on a generic approach to mission life-cycle activities for systems consisting of integrated Electrical and/or Electronic and/or Programmable Electronic (E/E/PE) components that are used to execute various objectives (missions). This offers a coherent early de-risking process for developing any mission-related system so as to enhance mission survivability and success.

    The research concentrated on three main phases which are as follows,

    Phase 1 - Investigation of Mission-Critical systems definitions used in various sectors; analyse and provide a clear Mission-Critical definition for military systems.

    Phase 2 - Following Model Driven Architecture (MDA) design, a novel data model approach is used to describe a generic architecture for a Mission-Critical system, its data and components inter-relationships.

    Phase 3 - Finally, as the framework proof-of-concept, a Defense Aid Suite (DAS) system is used as a case study to apply the proposed processes. Early de-risking modelling and techniques are used to model and simulate the Mission-Critical system so as to obtain qualitative and quantitative results.

    The main objective of this research (novelty) is to provide a clearer definition of Mission-Critical systems to the overall programme’s stakeholders and to de-risk any potential integration issues that may occur during the V-Cycle process of the system. Even though many standards and researchers worked on defining Mission-Critical systems, very few were reported for military platforms especially for platforms using the Interoperable Open Architecture (IOA) approach. From this study, it has been concluded that Mission-Critical systems can be defined but it is very challenging due to the fact that a mission cannot be easily described. Despite that, in this research, it has successfully presented that it is possible to define, specify, develop and de-risk Mission-Critical systems’ development and integration throughout a framework and with fruitful qualitative and quantitative results.

    This framework and can be potentially exploited for Mission-Critical system using the principles of Interoperable Open Architectures (IOA) and related defence standards such as Generic Vehicle Architecture (GVA) DefStan 23-009 and NATO GVA (NGVA) STANAG 4754.
    Date of AwardJun 2019
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Brighton
    SupervisorElias Stipidis (Supervisor) & Periklis Charchalakis (Supervisor)

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