10 February 2004 - Smiths Aerospace has been selected by The Boeing Company to provide the highly advanced Common Core System (CCS) for the Boeing 7E7 Dreamliner. Keith Butler-Wheelhouse, Chief Executive of Smiths Group, said:
This first contract win on the 7E7 is a major breakthrough for the Company, confirming Smiths Aerospace as a key tier 1 supplier/partner with Boeing for their next family of commercial airplanes. Smiths estimates potential future sales of these computer systems to be worth in excess of $1bn.
Dr John Ferrie, Group Managing Director for Smiths Aerospace said:
Selection for this pivotal system confirms Smiths as a premier integrator and developer of airborne computing systems, and positions our team to deliver state of the art avionics well into the future.
Acting like its central nervous system, the 7E7 CCS is the backbone of the airplanes computers, networks, and interfacing electronics, and will host all of the airplanes avionics and utilities functions. The system will replace dozens of traditional, standalone, computers and data busses fitted to present day aircraft. Smiths will integrate third party supplier-developed applications and associated software onto the CCS in its role as first-tier integrator. The 7E7 entry into service is scheduled for 2008.
Sir Michael Jenkins, president of Boeing UK, commented, The 7E7 heralds a major opportunity for the UK and todays announcement signifies the importance of the long standing relationship that Boeing enjoys with Smiths whose technological capabilities are applied today on all Boeing commercial aircraft.
The system will be designed and manufactured at Smiths facilities in Michigan, USA and Cheltenham, England.
About the Common Core System:
The Common Core System is a modular computing hardware platform and partitioned operating system that will host the software applications of the airplanes avionics and utilities functions. The system replaces the traditional, unique, standalone, computers that are fitted to common aircraft. The system architecture provides significant benefits to a traditional avionics architecture including, reduced development costs, reduced weight, increased performance, lower acquisition and maintenance costs, and reduced cost of change.
The heart of the system is two dual redundant Common Computing Resources cabinets that house fault-tolerant computing modules each with a robust, ARINC 653 partitioned software operating environment. An ARINC 664 Deterministic Ethernet advanced communications network connects the Common Computing Resources to a number of Remote Data Concentrators and the avionics and utilities systems. The architecture is both flexible and scalable, permitting application to other aircraft under development as well as upgrades to functionality of first-generation 7E7 aircraft.
Smiths Aerospace joined a team of international companies developing technologies and design concepts for the 7E7 airplane program as announced by Boeing and Smiths on June 3, 2003. Smiths is proposing a number of major electronics and actuation systems for the Boeing 7E7, of which the Common Core System is the first to be announced.