Thales R&T, France


Thales is a world leader for mission critical information systems, with activities in three core businesses: aerospace (with all major aircraft manufacturers as customers), defence, and security (including ground transportation solutions). It employs 68000 people worldwide (50 countries). It provides its customers with all the key functions in the critical information loop, from detection and processing to transmission and distribution. Thales develops its strategic capabilities in component, software and system engineering and architectures through its R&T organisation. Designing and developing the mission/safety-critical information systems that underpin the company’s leadership in aerospace, defence and security markets calls for comprehensive expertise in increasingly sophisticated technologies and the ability to integrate these technologies with large-scale software driven systems.

THALES Research & Technology (TRT), a network of corporate research laboratories of the Thales group, coordinates these activities at the global level. TRT’s primary mission is to forge links between the company and leading scientific bodies in each area of expertise in order to monitor the latest advances, develop disruptive technologies and expertise in new areas, attract talented science graduates and provide a platform for innovation and knowledge sharing to support company-wide projects. Most of these corporate laboratories are located on university campuses in immediate proximity to the company’s research partners.

Main tasks

TRT leads the exploitation work for AQUAS. In particular for this project it means encouraging the uptake of more optimised and automated approaches for dependability co-engineering in mainstream practices. This means supporting other management activities for optimal coordination, engaging with an advisory board every few months for feedback, contribution towards standards evolution and identifying synergistic engineering activities where mutual benefits can be obtained.

More generally, TRT will be identifying co-engineering issues and working on prototype development through their assistance with use case extension. They will also be contributing to the standards evolution activity. Both of these activities will be continued after the project completes, with results from the methodologies being integrated into Thales processes. The results of AQUAS will aim to reduce the effort of engineering non-functional properties by at least 10% (with a much greater benefit as co-engineering technology further matures).

On the technical side, related to methodology TRT will contribute to the specification of models, metrics and evaluation methods particularly in relation to performance and safety. The SotA in MERgE will be used with a focus on information pertaining to associated use cases. We will investigation the interaction point development. In particular the co-engineering results from the MERgE project will be drawn upon with further refinement and testing of the “Common Model”, “Independent Engineering Processes” and “Conditions for successful cross-fertilisation” propositions. Related to tooling, TRT will assess some of their specific tools in terms of functionalities/capability desired to be put in place.  Updates of their tools will be released to be tested with the use cases at agreed points during the project.