A process model for the development of airborne electronic equipment
Viljoen, Daniël Albertus
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Developments in systems engineering concepts and in the regulatory environment necessitated improvements to the processes used by Denel Aviation for the development of electronic equipment and software for use on board aircraft. A project was undertaken to improve the existing systems and software development processes. Shortcomings in the existing development processes used by the organisation were identified. A set of process requirements was determined, referring to general characteristics of airborne electronic equipment and to regulatory standards. A process model, the Airborne Electronic System Development Process (AESDP) to be used by Denel Aviation, was developed. This proposed process model was designed to support incremental and iterative development. The process employs a strict requirements based development methodology in accordance with the standards and recommended best practises. Important aspects of the proposed model include the following: (i) verification of requirement implementation commences in the definition stages of the project and (ii) a parallel (in time) bread boarding process is used to validate requirements and test implementation strategies and trade-offs - this is done without using the rigorous configuration management and other control process applicable to the life cycle data of the item under development. The process model represents hierarchical development, i.e. system (or product), software and hardware layers. The organisational context of the model was delineated, project stages and decision gates were identified and different development “threads” and associated activities were described. Requirements for detailed methods and procedures associated with theses activities were identified. The process model that resulted from this work, was approved by Denel and SAAB and is currently being applied to manage the upgrade of the Oryx helicopter fleet of the South African air force.
- Engineering