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Iberdrola

GMV wins the contract for the ground flight control computer of the EURODRONE program

The company will develop a critical system (DAL-A) for the management of flight orders sent to the unmanned aerial system (UAS) by the ground operator (DUO)
eurodrone

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The technology multinational GMV has been awarded the contract for the design, development, manufacture and logistical support of the Ground Flight Control Computer (GFCC) of the Eurodrone Programme, and will provide AIRBUS with a reliable safety-critical computer responsible for directing and controlling the Eurodrone UAS.

The Eurodrone programme is undoubtedly one of the most important European defence cooperation programmes of the moment. Eurodrone, which came into being thanks to a European Council agreement in December 2013, has as its main objective to provide partner countries with a strategic/operational system with state-of-the-art joint intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (JISR) capabilities. This requires a UAS or drone capable of an altitude of 13 km, a maximum speed of 500 km/h and a maximum flight time of between 18 and 40 hours depending on the mission profile.

The GFCC is a safety-critical DAL-A system in charge of managing the flight orders that the operator in charge of the UAS (the DUO) sends to it, as well as displaying the system information so that the DUO has accurate information and can fulfil its mission. The Eurodrone has been designed to perform flights in non-segregated airspace. In order for the Eurodrone to comply with stringent safety measures, several GFCCs are installed at each of the ground control stations (GCS). Each GFCC has several cards, both COTS and custom-designed, in a 19-inch rack. GMV will be responsible for the manufacturing of the equipment and the validation campaigns during which burn-in tests will be performed.

One of the tasks to be carried out by GMV will be to adapt the BSP, FPGAs and drivers so that the boards comply with the new requirements and can obtain DO-178C and DO-254 DAL-A certificates. The contract represents a major step forward in GMV's consolidation as a benchmark supplier of critical aeronautical systems.