Open Systems Architectures

Advansys Solutions has been centrally involved in the UK's drive for Open Architectures in military equipment since the company was formed and has made significant contributions to the Common Combat Systems for the UK Submarine Flotilla.

The company has been a key member of the BAE SYSTEMS Submarines Combat Systems Design Evolution Team since 2007 and is directly involved in the design initiatives which are focused on a cost effective open combat system.

Our approach to Open Architectures is an enterprise-wide, multi-faceted strategy for acquiring and maintaining Systems through the integration of interoperable sub-systems. This increases opportunities for competition and innovation, enabling rapidly fielded and upgradeable systems, and optimising application and algorithm reuse.

In 2008, Advansys Solutions won a highly competed contract from the Australian Government to deliver a candidate Open Systems Architecture for the Collins Class Submarine addressing both the architectural aspects and the supporting business model.

The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) was adopting an Open Architecture as a way to reduce the rising cost of Naval Mission Systems and Platforms and to increase the capabilities of its systems. They had concluded that this approach would allow for the rapid incorporation of COTS technology in mission systems as well as enabling reuse of software and related assets. More importantly, an Open Architecture would contribute to greater competition among system developers through the use of open standards and published interfaces.

The Australian Defence Department wanted to implement a sonar upgrade as an incremental approach using a Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) based Open Architecture. The objective of this approach was to permit insertion of products from multiple suppliers and provide a path for subsequent incremental improvements and capability insertions through a regular technical refresh program.

Advansys Solutions was contracted to provide a fully costed concept design for the Collins Class Submarine Sonar System Replacement to define the scope, options, indicative cost, timeframes, risks, evaluation criteria for future Request For Tenders (RFT) and constraints for the improvement of the Sonar System in the six Collins Class submarines, including through-life support. The resulting conceptual design:

  • Allow for affordable interoperability;
  • Ensure that the system design is sufficiently flexible and robust to accommodate continuous changes in technology requirements;
  • Facilitate integration with other systems and use of commercial products from multiple sources both in the initial design and in future enhancements;
  • Enable technology insertion as currently available commercial products mature and new commercial products become available in the future;
  • Allow for affordable support.

The company delivered a Business Case that would examine the cost implications and define an appropriate Business Model for the programme. Specifically, this examined factors such as technology refresh cycles, in-service support methodology, hardware acquisition strategies, Intellectual Property management, and overall cost of ownership.

The company delivered the findings of the study to the Global Combat Systems Industry in Canberra and was congratulated by the Australian Government for the innovation and quality of the output.