The aim of this project is the evaluation of the optical approach for data transmission onboard aircraft which in the future, due to their decentralized systems, will require high integrity, high speed and above all electromagnetically passive data transmission systems.
The ODT program provided a broad field of information about the state of art of optronics. It appears that the selection of an optimum architecture is very difficult for a general hypothetical system. The design guidelines established during ODT program could be efficiently applied once a system was precisely defined.
This program has identified open problems which are mainly due to the weak experience of optic in avionics. The results about the feasibility of optical systems allow optimism about the maturity of the optical technology.
Good experience was gained with the practical aspects of fibre optics concerning handling with, and installation in, aircraft.
The flight test demonstration showed good functioning (error free) of optical data transmission in aircraft environment.
A lot of useful experience was gained during the whole project, in working together with the team of European partners.
The number of data required by the on board systems increases rapidly (doubles every 3 to 4 years), the network complexity grows, at the same time stronger real time requirements take place. Therefore high data transmission speed and shorter access time will be inevitable. The answer to this challenge is the introduction of optical data transmission networks in the next generation of aircraft. Wide bandwidth, very high immunity against electromagnetic interference (EMI), perfect disconnection of electrical potential and low weight are outstanding properties of optical fibre.
After determination of the characteristics of existing and envisaged sensors, processors and terminals, data rate requirements, system topologies and protocols will be derived. Furthermore available hardware will be assessed, needs for improvement identified and standardization at the European level will be initiated with the aim of more efficient component development and enhanced competitiveness of European suppliers. On this basis implementation guidelines for optical data bus systems will be issued and test methods for components and systems for production as well as for operational systems will be specified. Laboratory and flight test with ODT demonstration systems will be carried out in order to verify the concepts and identify areas for further development. Finally specifications will be written as the prerequisite for the development of a fully operational ODT system.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
80038 Pomigliano D'arco - Napoli
GU14 6YU Farnborough
1100 AE Amsterdam
GL52 4SF Cheltenham
TQ4 7BE Paignton
8300 AD Emmeloord