Integrated Modular Concepts for Improved ECLSS Command and Data Handling 2006-01-2122
Current Environmental Control and Life Support Systems (ECLSS), particularly on large systems, have a tendency to include several heterogeneous processing elements. This approach is also the default in the commercial aircraft industry. However, Honeywell has been extremely successful in the past decade in using an integrated modular approach to command and data handling for aircraft avionics. This approach, dubbed “Fifth Generation Avionics” by the Air Force's Wright Laboratory, has resulted in significant reductions in the size, weight, power, and acquisition costs of the data handling subsystem. Logistics, modification, and upgrade costs also decreased considerably. While commonality is maximized in the integrated modular architecture, each application continues to be independent with internal designs completely under the control of the application developer. Simultaneously, the overall system architecture and interactions between applications are controlled by the system integrator. This paper will describe the basic architectural principles associated with an integrated modular architecture, and initiate an investigation into the use of this architecture to minimize size, weight, power, and other costs associated with control of future ECLS systems.