GE Aerospace today announced the selection by Bell Textron Inc., a Textron company, for work on the development of a Common Open Architecture Digital Backbone (COADB), Voice and Data Recorder, and the Health Awareness System (HAS) for the Bell V-280 Valor. Following the U.S. Army’s Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA) program contract award, the V-280 Valor will enable the U.S. Army and its allies to maintain battlefield superiority including transformational capabilities in speed, range, payload, and endurance. The GE Aerospace systems will be part of an open, scalable, high-speed data infrastructure consistent with the U.S. Army’s Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) that enables rapid testing, verification, and fielding of mission-focused capabilities for future vertical lift programs. Building on GE Aerospace’s commercial pedigree for open avionics infrastructure solutions, networked flight recorders, and onboard maintenance systems, the use of these systems will accelerate the launch of user-configurable solutions for critical military subsystems.
“This is a foundational effort to improve weapon system capability and affordability for the Army by ensuring architectural alignment for integration of new technology,” said Ryan Ehinger, senior vice president and program director for FLRAA at Bell. “This collaborative approach provides the Army a vendor-agnostic path to explore new systems and capabilities – delivering soldiers the right tools for success in multi-domain missions.”
“Our open systems technologies and experience provide the customer with the ability to make aircraft system modifications for this next generation of vertical lift aircraft. This changes how aircraft are updated and maintained, and it ensures that our soldiers have an advantage on the battlefield.By leveraging GE’s experience in delivering open avionics architecture, the Army will realize the benefits of Modular Open Systems Approach designs from the outset of the Future Vertical Lift programs. Providing an open, high-speed, secure, interoperable system in the digital backbone is critical to support our customer,” said Amy Gowder, president and CEO, Defense & Systems for GE Aerospace.
The COADB builds on lessons learned from the Army’s Mission System Architecture Demonstration (MSAD), where it demonstrated the capability to rapidly integrate multiple operationally relevant sensors and equipment packages aligned to government-defined use cases. The Voice and Data Recorder is an end-to-end system to acquire, transfer, process, and analyze flight and voice data. The voice and data recorder supports the full mission cycle with safety, maintenance, and flight quality assurance. The Health Awareness System builds on decades of commercial and military operation and has saved operators millions of dollars and increased mission readiness with predictive maintenance. Bell and GE Aerospace are incorporating these advanced capabilities on the Bell V-280 Valor and Bell 360 Invictus as part of the FLRAA and FARA programs,and working with the Army to set the standards for quicker, more affordable upgrades in capability as technologies and mission requirements evolve.
GE Aerospace, a subsidiary of General Electric, is headquartered in Evendale, Ohio, outside Cincinnati. GE Aerospace is among the top aircraft engine suppliers, and offers engines for the majority of commercial aircraft. GE Aerospace is part of the General Electric conglomerate, which is one of the world’s largest corporations. The division operated under the name of General Electric Aircraft Engines (GEAE) until September 2005, and as GE Aviation until July 2022. GE Aerospace’s main competitors in the engine market are Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce. Not only does GE Aerospace manufacture engines under its umbrella, it also partners with other manufacturers. CFM International, the world’s leading supplier of aircraft engines and GE’s most successful partnership, is a 50/50 joint venture with the French company Safran Aircraft Engines.