Aerospace and Defence
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An introduction to FACE

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Background

Being locked into proprietary platforms or vendor specific open architectures has made the task of achieving supremacy in warfare technology no easier.  These issues limit government al  ability to bring in third parties to compete or add new capabilities,  resulting  in  expensive  sole-source or single-bidder contract awards.  By  curb ing  long programme schedules  and opening more  integration options t he  Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE)  initiative   with its  open systems architecture strategy   can  make a significant  difference  both commercially and  technological ly.   

Business and technology benefits of adopting the FACE approach 

The main goal of the FACE Consortium is to increase the affordability and improve time-to-field of avionics systems and their software-based platforms. The FACE technical standard  has  increased innovation across the defen c sector by  allowing  scie ntific  and technolog ical  communities  to  focus on  developing  ground-breaking capabilities  within  FACE units of conformance ( UoCs ) . It has   negat ed  the need  to  tackl e   awkward redesign in order to   shoehor n  new developments into existing   monolithic  avionics system s .  

FACE technical architecture avionics systems can now be tailored by  mixing and matching  UoC capabilities to support a range of ever-evolving missions.  T he  likelihood of  entire systems  becoming obsolete or outdated and  of  no  further   use  is dramatically reduced.  U nnecessary duplicated  development efforts  are  minimized as is  the  training overhe ad  associated with   installation, operation, and maintenance  because of the   design  criteria  shared by FACE  UoCs .    

But p erhaps  the  most significant  benefit  for the government consumer  is the nullification of  vendor   lock -in bolster ing  effective competition  and  lowering costs across DoD avionics systems Perhaps c ounter intuitively  the commercial benefits to  UoC  software supplier chosen to fulfil government contract s can  be  significant and   ongoing ,   due to  ever-evolving warfare demands. UoC   s oftware developers  have  also seen savings  in software development efforts, contributing to   the reduction in time-to-field of avionics systems .  

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Vendor buy-in

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Achieving FACE conformance

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Summary

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