Securely Connect Military Systems to Ethernet LAN
Integrators, engineers and project managers working with the miltary are coginizant of the need to translate the wealth of tactical information acquired by aging technology into useful and timely data for today’s military operations. New advances in the computing environment provide for increasingly efficient and faster information processing. The IXI Technology Data I/O Converter enables you to take advantage of these efficiencies by translating data from legacy military systems into industry-standard protocols that work with contemporary technology.
The Data I/O Converter links weapons, radar and other systems to Windows or UNIX/Linux based computers over Ethernet. It allows for the freedom and flexibility of transferring data to systems that are not directly connected to the military I/O channels. The Converter provids real-time, higly-reliable communications and control that military systems demand, without the bulky, costly, cable connections associated with these systems.
NTDS (MIL-STD-1397C) and ATDS (MIL-STD-188-203-1A, Appendix D2) interfaces are currently supported.
The Data I/O Converter features two NTDS/ATDS channels and two Ethernet ports. The dual Ethernet ports allow redundant connections to the remote computer, improving network fault tolerance and reliability in that data transfer continues even if one Ethernet link drops. The dual NTDS/ATDS channels add additional system flexibility and reliability.
NTDS and ATDS Bridges
Instead of connecting with a remote computer, the NTDS Bridge connects two legacy NTDS equipment via Ethernet and minimizes the length of NTDS cable runs between displays, sensors or weapon systems while extending their communication range far beyond MIL-STD-1397C maximum distances. The NTDS Bridge consists of two Data I/O Converters, one linked to the legacy NTDS device at each end of the connection. From the prespective of the legacy NTDS equipments, the Bridge functions as a transparent, long NTDS cable, and so no modification is required on the two legacy equipments. Moving the long haul communications to Ethernet permits redundant paths through the network fabric, greatly improving the survivability of the communications channel. Cable bulk and weight are also greatly reduced.
Similar to the NTDS Bridge, the ATDS Bridge connects and extends the cable run between ATDS equipment. It to consists of two Data I/O Converters that communicate over Ethernet.
Unlike the NTDS and ATDS Bridges, the NTDS-to-ATDS Bridge contains only one Data I/O Converter. This bridge provides a transparent hardware and protocol conversion that allow Tactical Data System (TDS) computers and Data Terminal Set (DTS) modems to communicate over heterogenous data links. This makes it possible to connect an NTDS TDS computer with ATDS DTS modem, and vice versa to connect an ATDS TDS computer to an NTDS DTS modem.
While connecting military systems to Ethernet provides a great deal of communication flexibilty, data sent across Ethernet may be vulnerable to interception by unauthorized agents. To ensure security and data confidentiality, the Data I/O Converter encrypts all Ethernet data.
The Data I/O Converter contains non-volatile memory to store firmware and configuration information. This storage memory can be write-protected to prevent unauthorized modification or data recording during tactical operations.
IXI Technology offers Windows and UNIX/Linux based software libraries to communicate with the Data I/O Converter.
Customers who have already developed software to communicate with IXI Technology’s native NTDS Interface cards can seamlessly migrate to the Data I/O Converter. A redirection software offered by IXI Technology allows one to treat a remote NTDS channel on the Data I/O Converter as if it were a local, native NTDS card. The redirection software maintains the same API as the native NTDS card. However, instead of communicating with the native NTDS card, the redirection package interacts with the remote NTDS channel.
Applications with rigorous real-time requirements that cannot tolerate non-deterministic network latencies can be achieved by developing custom software modules that run directly on the Data I/O Converter. For example, the developer can partition the software such that that time critical, real-time processing is executed by the custom software module, and non-real-time tasks handled by the Windows or UNIX/Linux computer.