Military embedded systems are computer systems that are dedicated to specific functions within broader electrical or mechanical systems. The embedded systems form parts of complete devices, often including mechanical and hardware parts, and are useful control points for the devices. Based on microcontrollers, such as CPUs with peripheral interfaces or integrated memory, the embedded systems are primarily dedicated to the handling of particular tasks with more precision and reliability. For instance, the systems can help to detect enemy aircrafts and to guide missiles.
Military Applications of Embedded Systems
The use of military embedded systems ensures enhanced cost-effectiveness and success of defense operations while reducing the risks involved. The systems can be integrated into processing boards, memory, graphics, I/O, videos, chassis, switches and backplanes and used for command, communication, control, computing, surveillance, intelligence and reconnaissance. Since they can be built on open architectures, the embedded systems can heighten situational awareness through high-speed processing and I/O abilities.
Similarly, military embedded systems can provide commanders with critical ISR information by capturing, recording, processing, analyzing, storing and delivering images and data as soon as needed. Besides, the systems can boost mission management, networking, remote asset control, fire control and vetronics. Furthermore, embedded systems are used in unmanned systems for a broad range of operations, including battlespace awareness, port security, precision targeting, biological, chemical and nuclear agents, and counter operations against advanced explosive devices.
In tactical aircrafts, embedded systems help to boost data and computing management for fleets, fighters, bombers, helicopters and transport. And in ground defense where vehicles are routinely exposed to extreme temperature, terrain and attacks, the embedded systems and modules are securely placed to resist shock and stress, and to provide high-degree performance under the rugged conditions.
Basic Characteristics of Embedded Systems
As opposed to the general-purpose computers for multiple tasks, embedded systems are designed to perform specific tasks. The systems can also deliver real-time performance. Typically, the systems are small computerized parts located within larger devices that perform more general tasks. Therefore, military embedded systems are never standalone devices.