New Airborne Gigabit Network Switch Designed for Flight Tests

Curtiss-Wright’s NSW-8GT-TGE-1 is the newest in a range of managed high-speed switches optimized specifically for the demanding and time-critical movement of flight test data By Abi Wylie / 26 Oct 2023
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Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions Division has introduced the industry’s first rugged airborne Gigabit network switch designed specifically to meet the unique demands of flight test applications. 

The new NSW-8GT-TGE-1 is a rugged 8-port non-blocking Gigabit Ethernet switch that provides full IRIG-106 Chapter 21-28 Telemetry Network Standard (TmNS) compliance, including MDL programming. 

TmNS provides a powerful new tool for the flight test telemetry industry. Replacing unidirectional PCM-based architectures, TmNS enables bi-directional communications. 

TmNS specifies the configuration, management, network transport protocols, telemetry link, and various other system and component capabilities of data acquisition units (DAU), network switches, recorders, radios, and ground components, such as the antenna and the ground system software. 

Enabling reliable data switching and time coherency distribution in harsh environmental conditions, the NSW-8GT-TGE-1 is the latest addition to Curtiss-Wright’s broad range of managed high-speed switches optimized specifically for the demanding and time-critical movement of flight test data.

To optimize size, weight and power (SWaP) on space-constrained airborne test platforms, the NSW-8GT-TGE-1 provides test program engineers with a compact 8-port network switch that shares the same footprint as Curtiss-Wright’s 5-port variant yet delivers far more features. 

The NSW-8GT-TGE-1 supports the packet switching and IEEE 1588 precision time protocol (PTP) time distribution required by networked flight test instrumentation (FTI) system components. 

The switch supports IEEE 1588 with an IRIG-B time code reader and generator, a built-in battery-backed real- time clock, and a GPS receiver. The switch supports managed operation, enabling dynamic configuration, statistics gathering, and health monitoring using Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). 

“For critical flight test applications and network architectures, the Ethernet switch is truly the heart of the network,” said Brian Perry, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions Division. “If the switch goes down, so does access to all connected systems. Our new NSW-8GT-TGE-1 is the first 8-port rugged Ethernet switch designed for airborne flight test. Its 50ms power hold-up capability eliminates data loss from brief blackouts or brownouts.”  

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Posted by Abi Wylie Connect & Contact
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