Neither modular nor “open” systems directly address the total DMS problem. However, a MOSA strategy would increase the probability that system components would be available from multiple sources in the future. With proper architecture, planning, and documentation, MOSA could provide an effective strategy for mitigating the problem of obsolescence by ensuring that hardware and software components could be upgraded or replaced over the lifetime of the system. However, the commercial marketplace would determine the need for, and the nature of, publicly open standards beyond those dictated by system-of-system interoperability requirements.
The good news is that the airframe and avionics systems suppliers are already developing and implementing many MOSA-based technical solutions and are working in a loosely coordinated way with DoD to identify and resolve related business issues (see
Chapter 3 ). Avionics systems suppliers are rapidly developing their own modular architectures and modular interfaces. The need for system flexibility and extensibility, coupled with the tremendous competitive leverage of reusing hardware, software, and/or intellectual property, and the need to make more effective use of a limited supply of capable personnel, have forced industry in that direction.
Joint industry/government development of the architecture for the joint tactical radio system, industry interaction with the Open System Joint Task Force, and support from the National Center for Advanced Technologies to the Office for Aging Avionics, Aeronautical Systems Center, and the Open System Joint Task Force for MOSA, are examples of effective industry/ government relationships. More coordinated, enterprise-level interactions with industry would be beneficial. By working jointly with industry to resolve business issues, as well as by addressing internal management, budgetary, and technical issues, the Air Force can continue to make progress in mitigating the aging avionics problem.