DACS and Digital Switches Compared
4.0 There is no software development required. Cost and schedule risk is eliminated.
4.1 Software objects
The Model Builder Tool does not require the user to develop code. It gives the user access to a rich radio communications environment that has been developed and extended over ten years across a customer base of several hundred platforms and a large variety of applications, from military aircraft and the space station, to nuclear power stations and submarines.
4.2 It is the sophisticated second-order effects that kill you
The radio environment is much richer and fully-featured than could ever practicably be incorporated into a single point solution code base (e.g., frequency-based Fresnel diffraction zones, NDB effects and tones, daily readiness and on-line tests, etc.). Virtually every other feature that could conceivably be applicable to the training application is available, either free, or at minor additional cost. (The list includes compression & encryption effects, ATIS, morse, jammers, NDB, RWR tones, terrain database hooks, random accessible record and playback both locally and net-centric, etc.) It is hard to conceive of a feature of the radio environment that is not available as a pre-tested software object or function.
True, it is relatively straightforward for a user to implement the primary connectivity of a communications application using the digital switch architecture. However, even if this solution is acceptable, there are considerable costs associated with the software development procedures and documentation imposed by most contracts. And usually, this primary level of connectivity is rarely acceptable to the customers SME's, a fact that is frequently not discovered until acceptance testing is underway. With radio environment simulations, "the devil is often in the details". Implementing the many nuances and second order effects that the customer considers essential to training can prove either expensive or, sometimes, even impossible.
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