This paper describes the operational concept of the Embedded Instrumentation Systems Architecture (EISA) that is being developed for Test and Evaluation (T&E) applications. The architecture addresses such future T&E requirements as interoperability, flexibility, and non-intrusiveness. These are the ultimate requirements that support continuous T&E objectives.
In this paper, we demonstrate that these objectives can be met by decoupling the Embedded Instrumentation (EI) system into an on-board and an off-board component. An on-board component is responsible for sampling, pre-processing, buffering, and transmitting data to the off-board component. The latter is responsible for aggregating, post-processing, and storing test data as well as providing access to the data via a clearly defined interface including such aspects as security, user authentication and access control.
The power of the EISA architecture approach is in its inherent ability to support virtual instrumentation as well as enabling interoperability with such important T&E systems as Integrated Network-Enhanced Telemetry (iNET), Test and Training Enabling Architecture (TENA) and other relevant Department of Defense initiatives.
Military systems in the new century are becoming increasingly complex, network centric, and information intensive.
Existing ad-hoc test and evaluation (T&E) approaches are facing increasing challenges to cope with these complexities.
An open, modular, standards-based embedded instrumentation (EI) architecture (OMEA) is proposed to leapfrog the
capabilities of T&E. The OMEA embraces an 'all digital' solution and rapidly emerging commercial-off-the-shelf
(COTS) hardware and software technologies. These technologies include smart sensor networks, time synchronization
for sensor network, reconfigurable hardware, model-based design, and software defined radio. The OMEA architecture
will rationalize the myriad of heterogeneous EI and control systems. It will normalize the EI interfaces enabling easier
and more cost-effective system design, development, procurement, integration and testing. With the growth of digital
control platforms, it is possible to design-in EI capabilities to sense and collect critical performance data without
requiring additional sensors. Any military vendor or system integrator will be able to realize this 'controller is the
instrument' vision by using the proposed OMEA architecture.