Actisense has been selected by Drumgrange Ltd to provide a solution for buffering an ARPA RADAR NMEA 0183 output used to provide data to a number of subsystems on board a range of Royal Navy ships. The XERES Interface unit (XIU) has been successfully introduced into service by Drumgrange as part of its XERES product.
James Latta, Project Manager at Drumgrange commented: “We approached Actisense to source a solution to provide multiple Automatic Radar Plotting Aid (ARPA) outputs from the Naval Ships RADAR system to XERES, WECDIS and future systems. Both XERES and WECDIS systems require the ARPA output from the RADAR. The RADAR only provides 1 NMEA output and therefore there was a requirement to introduce the Xeres Interface Unit (XIU), based on the NBF-2 which provides multiple outputs as required. The RADAR is used to provide range and bearing information of tracked vessels for navigation, and provides ARPA outputs for both XERES and WECDIS. This enables all navigators to monitor these platforms.”
The XERES Marine Communication System (MCS) enables the mother ship to keep track of the position of a number of Naval patrol boats. This is a vital link in the chain used by the Navy to help with Customs and Excise, law enforcement, special forces and civil defence.
Phil Whitehurst, Managing Director of Active Research, said “The ideal solution was Actisense’s NBF-2. We re-packaged the NBF-2 in a tough metal housing, with computer D type connectors used to provide connections to NMEA listeners. To complete the system, military spec power connectors, fuses and indicators were implemented. The NBF-2’s features vital to the system were the isolated ISO-Drive output and the ability to communicate to RS232 and RS422 listeners.”
The flexible ISO-Drive output is especially essential in a ‘multiplatform’ environment such as a large Naval vessel, and the availability of such a cost effective device with an uncompromised specification was vital in the provision of COTS (Commercial Off The Shelf) equipment for the Navy.
Drumgrange was established in 1979 and specialises in the supply of innovative open architecture solutions for the defence and civil electronic market. Their products are in service with the UK Armed Forces, at home and overseas.
James Latta also added: “Drumgrange has since successfully introduced the First XIU into service, and also received a second batch of XIU units which are currently being integrated into other Naval Ship RADAR systems.”
The military variant of the NBF is designated NBF-2-XIU and meets the additional EMC requirements of MIL SPEC DEFSTAN59-41, ‘BELOW DECKS’ ISSUE 5 MILSTD.461 in addition to the standard CE for EMC tests.
Most Actisense products can be customised to meet the exact requirements of the customer. If you have a requirement for a customised Actisense product, contact the Actisense team.