LYNX MOSA.ic™ uniquely leverages Intel virtualization-enabled multi-core processors to simplify software stack complexity and unlock rapid development and integration options. It is trailblazing the modernization of avionic software platform design conventions through landmark design wins in military and civil aircraft programs, greatly reducing the technical risk and certification costs for future programs. The technology champions open standards and modular composability to pass forward the cost savings benefits of open proprietary software component.
Intel virtualization-enabled processor (VTx VTd)
In a traditional platform (left diagram), all hardware resources are owned by the real-time operating system (RTOS), which controls CPU cores, memory, and peripherals. It is a monolithic block of code that manages task scheduling, memory partitioning, and device I/O, all of which must be safety certified to the same level and bug-free to be secure. LYNX MOSA.ic™ (right) is based on the LynxSecure® separation kernel, which relies on Intel’s native hardware virtualization to do the heavy lifting. This creates efficient, tamper-proof, and non-bypassable virtual machines (VMs). Hardware resources are robustly partitioned into almost zero overhead VMs populated with a mix of OSes, RTOSes, and bare-metal applications. This partitioning allows systems to be built consisting of multiple safety levels, minimizing high design assurance levels (DALs).
Traditional RTOS architecture vs LYNX MOSA.ic
FAA and EASA avionics certification authorities require all avionic software to comply with RTCA DO-178C development and CAST-32A multi-core certification guidelines. Supporting modern avionic software requirements is incredibly costly; testing alone for DO-178C compliance can cost real-time operating system (RTOS) vendors tens of millions of dollars for a modest set of features to meet Design Assurance Levels (DAL) C or higher. Multi-core integrity and timing analysis for airworthiness certification adds additional program costs and technical risk of comparable magnitude. Lynx is serving major new avionics programs to set new standards in compute capacity, high availability platform design for autonomous flight control. These programs have aided Lynx in achieving DO-178C DAL A quality standards for the LYNX MOSA.ic platform hosted on Intel processor and network controllers - Intel Atom Denverton SoC, Xeon Broadwell DE SoC, and soon to release Atom Elkhart Lake SoC.
LYNX MOSA.ic takes advantage of Intel Virtualization Technology to construct VMs by mapping memory, peripherals, interrupts, and DMA to processor cores, resulting in almost zero overhead during context switches. This deep level of virtualization minimizes software stack complexity, while separation maximizes software security. The platform has achieved DO-178C DAL A quality standards, while its compartmentalized framework enables customers to reuse existing certifications for the DO-178C OS (via AC 20-148), with only new software modules needing to be certified. This cuts development costs and reduces time to deployment.
LYNX MOSA.ic architecture revolutionizes traditional monolithic software resource management and I/O multiplexing by:
LYNX MOSA.ic software development tool suite includes: