Multicore Avionics Computer Selected for Autonomous Aircraft

CMC Electronics' PU-3000 avionics computer will host Merlin's autonomous flight software By Mike Ball / 14 Nov 2022

Multicore avionics computerCMC Electronics has confirmed that the company’s civil-certified PU-3000 avionics computer has been selected by Merlin to power autonomous flight solutions. Merlin’s autonomy systems aim to reduce crew in large cargo aircraft, and to eliminate crew entirely in small aircraft, solving a key aviation issue in an industry facing a severe global pilot shortage.

CMC will provide its latest multicore avionics computer, which has been certified by Transport Canada, to host Merlin’s advanced flight control software that enables autonomous flying. The PU-3000’s open architecture platform offers high-performance multicore processing capability and a rich set of interfaces, allowing Merlin to easily adapt the system for use on different aircraft types. The PU-3000 allows customers to retain their intellectual property by implementing their own applications using CMC’s comprehensive Software Development Kit (SDK). The computer can host software applications developed to various Design Assurance Levels, up to DAL A.

Merlin has recently signed a partnership with the US Air Force to make the C-130J transport aircraft more autonomous in order to enhance safety and its operational flexibility.

Shaun Johnson, CEO of Merlin New Zealand Limited, commented: “The PU-3000 avionics computer has the multicore processing power, diverse interfaces and the civil certification pedigree we needed for our mission. Merlin is delighted to partner with CMC Electronics to propel the future of fully autonomous flight and to build a safe and autonomous unmanned aerospace industry.”

Brad Nolen, Vice President, Sales and Marketing at CMC Electronics, stated: “This new contract is a timely and strategic development for CMC Electronics. At a time when crew shortages are a critical industry issue, we are pleased to be part of the solution alongside Merlin who is enhancing aviation safety while pushing the boundaries of innovation.”

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Posted by Mike Ball Mike Ball is our resident technical editor here at Unmanned Systems Technology. Combining his passion for teaching, advanced engineering and all things unmanned, Mike keeps a watchful eye over everything related to the unmanned technical sector. With over 10 years’ experience in the unmanned field and a degree in engineering, Mike’s been heading up our technical team here for the last 8 years. Connect & Contact