In this article, you can know about how embedded systems are used in aerospace. We have explained the applications of embedded systems in aerospace according to different levels in the aerospace domain.
Air Traffic Control
This is a special level because it doesn’t exist in other applications like automotive, where there is no global communication between vehicles. The main objective of ATC is collision prevention which requires communication and radar systems. To provide redundancy most aircraft are equipped with TCAS ( Traffic alert and Collision Avoidance Systems). This explains the first level of applications of embedded systems in aerospace. So at air Control traffic level, Embedded systems are an integral part of:
- Communication tools
- Radar systems
- TCAS (Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance Sytems)
Flight Control System
Airplanes contain a lot of embedded control systems, one of them is the flight control system. It controls the flight trajectory and the stability of the airplane. So this application of the embedded systems in aerospace provides safety and automation.
- Sensors: The Main objective to use sensors is mainly to navigate the aircraft autonomously. There are almost six types of sensors used in airplanes. These sensors are used with embedded systems, so as to control these sensors.
- Control Systems: The autopilot is a system that serves to diminish the workload of the pilot. After long hours in the air, the pilot must be concentrated enough to be able to land safely. Another major reason to utilize a control system in larger planes is the fact that the control surfaces of these planes require large control forces, which are impossible for a human pilot. Further, it is to notice that a computer-controlled system is more accurate. These systems are not possible to be made without embedded systems. Explaining the applications of embedded systems in aerospace.
- Actuators: The control surfaces of aircraft are actuated by servo motors. Now the aircraft is fully controlled by servo motors and there is no mechanical connection anymore. To generate the controlling signals, the pilot only uses a small sidestick. These are controlled using embedded systems.
At the component level, there are a lot of embedded control systems. From watching movies to temperature controls to every component, most components have anyhow use of embedded systems. Some of these components are temperature control system, entertainment system, smart lighting, adjustable seats with buttons, etc. So the application of the embedded systems in aerospace plays a great role in airplanes. We have explained two of them which are very different:
- Black Box: The FDR (flight data recorder) or black box is a special component in the way that it interacts with aircraft systems. It is designed to record specific aircraft data, often used for the crash investigation.
- Integrated Modular Avionics: It is standardized computer network systems that simplify the development of avionics software. Apart from easier software development it also simplifies hardware and software integration and maintenance.
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