RTEMS Improvement – Real Time Operating System


Technology abstract

RTEMS Improvement, Real-Time Executive for Multiprocessor Systems, is a Portuguese real-time operating system designed for embedded systems. The RTEMS system presented here has been adapted to implement a basic certifiable Health Monitoring System (HMS) focused principally on critical applications. The results showed RTEMS could be a cost-effective solution for Avionics, Aeronautics, Railway and Automotive.

Technology Description

The different parts of the technology offer can be defined as follows:

  • The Stimulation block is the STANAG message generator, stimulating UAV real telemetry.
  • The critical block is the core HMS application. It is a modified RTEMS Improvement running on LEON3 architecture. The system processes the telemetry and generates ARINC-661 compliant packets.
  • The HMI block consists of the visualization of Telemetry data, based on a standard ARINC-661 Definition File, updated in real time with incoming data from RTEMS.

Innovations & Advantages

RTEMS Improvement is a certified Real-Time Operating System (RTOS), which has been used widely in Space projects. This is a qualified version that does not include BSD Net Stack or Drivers for peripherals. A demonstrator has been constructed to:

  • Assess the viability of RTEMS for UAV critical systems
  • Simulate an Air-to-Ground application

The application chosen was a Health Monitoring System (HMS). The demonstrator implemented a basic certifiable HMS for a UAV Ground Control Station.  In order to get a realistic, close-to-market environment, the HMS application was designed to be driven by flight-proven telemetry transmitted from an industrial UAV.
Airbus Defence and Space provided a simulation record of ATLANTE aircraft STANAG telemetry, ensuring that the software was fully aligned with a real‐life, medium‐sized unmanned aircraft application.
The RTEMS Improvement does not include drivers for any peripheral or the BSD TCP/IP stack, which required that the ETHERNET driver and UDP/IP stack were created from scratch.
The RTEMS Improvement has been confirmed as a cost-effective RTOS alternative for critical UAV applications, with the advantages of:

  • Low cost
  • Small memory footprint
  • Modular implementation

Further Information

Current and Potential Domains of Application

Space-qualified RTEMS system

  • Currently adapted for use as a Health Monitoring system for UAV ground control system.
  • Low cost system

Potential applications:

  • Raliway Signalling safety-critical Operating System
  • Avionics embedded system (FCS, Cargo Management, Comms Management) Operating System
  • Automotive ADAS Operating System