The FAA has turned to independent software verification company Verocel to develop the next-generation safety computer for its Wide Area Augmentation System. The system is an air navigation aid that augments GPS, developed to help aircraft rely on GPS for all phases of flight. Its accuracy, integrity and availability allows more precise landings at any airport in its coverage area.
Under the $6.2 million software contract, Verocel will not only design, construct and verify the new computer, it will assist the FAA in the migration and verification efforts for WAAS application software. The new computers will replace WAAS' current models, for which Verocel also had a hand in developing certification materials.
"For Verocel, this contract award is particularly significant because it validates that our expertise extends beyond safety-critical software verification and is indeed fully system-wide in scope," said George Romanski, company president. "We are leading all phases of the WAAS safety computer development, specification and design effort, including hardware, system integration and test, software verification and more, all the way through to finished-goods manufacturing and delivery."
Before WAAS was developed, the U.S. National Airspace System wasn't able to provide horizontal and vertical navigation for approach operations for users at all locations, according to the FAA. The system has greatly improved information for en-route navigation, as well as airport departures and arrivals.