Celestica and Defense OEMs : On a Mission to Advance Innovation

  • Celestica  |
  • 2021-05-25
Celestica and defense oems

Militaries maintain fleets of aircraft, ships and ground vehicles, yet information is their most valuable asset. Decision-makers must be able to gather and analyze intelligence in real-time in order to determine when and where to deploy equipment and personnel. This presents enormous growth opportunities for OEMs who build intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) and radio frequency (RF) systems that collect and deliver the information military leaders needed to make informed decisions. 

Speed to market and reliable product performance is critical to an OEM’s ability to seize these opportunities. . For some, success depends on finding a partner that can supplement their internal product development resources to accelerate the design, manufacture and delivery timelines. 

A common challenge for OEMs is ensuring that their latest innovations can communicate with legacy hardware and software systems in theater. OEMs are held accountable to the output of various standards committees developing interoperability parameters like the Future Airborne Capability Environment (FACE), Sensor Open System Architecture (SOSA), Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) and C4ISR/EW Modular Open Suite of Standards (CMOSS).

These standards also limit OEMs’ abilities to design and build customized solutions using proprietary hardware components or software solutions. They must take a commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) approach. However, commercially-available products are often not designed and built to withstand the extreme conditions military systems are exposed to. 

Military Design and Engineering Expertise
Celestica in 2018 acquired Atrenne Integrated Solutions, which included the AbelConn Electronics and Atrenne Computing Solutions divisions. The merger ensured Celestica would continue supporting its customers’ need to ensure system interoperability while always striving to improve performance, reduce system size, weight and power (SWAP) and increase data throughput.

Atrenne leverages its 50 years of industry experience to design and build ruggedized systems that provide real-time data processing for mission critical performance. Its expertise lies in delivering enhancements in data throughput where the latest  CPU/GPU technologies are being used, and in how to move that data in and out (I/O) of systems. 

The process typically starts with the system’s “heart”: the backplane. Atrenne has developed a host of proven high speed backplanes from VPX GEN 3 to VPX GEN4/5 based that are connected to matched impedance I/O boards to take that performance to the outside world. This includes bringing fiber connections into and through the backplanes.

Atrenne provides best in class thermal management utilizing convection, conduction and liquid cooled variants to meet the increasing thermal loads to ensure equipment performance in harsh environments. For instance, the new Promethean series of rugged, compact, and powerful small form factor CPU/GPU systems provides highly flexible and configurable solutions for a myriad military and industrial applications. 

Certified Manufacturing and Product Lifecycle Support
These integrated electrical, mechanical and thermal systems must also be designed and built in compliance with the US International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). Atrenne’s engineers and designers are certified to support ITAR requirements to execute rapid product launch from concept to full-scale manufacturing. 

AbelConn Electronics, a division of Atrenne, specializes in ITAR-certified manufacturing and licensing support. The team has fostered strong relationships with defense integrators to build the components and integrated systems defense OEMs require, and continues growing to meet customer demand.

A new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Maple Grove, Minn. will be fully ramped in July 2021, delivering rapid prototyping, volume manufacturing and engineering support for high reliability defense, medical and industrial products. Additionally, as a Center of Excellence for licensing, the site will expand Celestica’s capabilities around servicing and maintaining mature product lines. 

Focusing on the Mission
Defense OEMs cannot lose focus of their mission objectives - harnessing the best engineering innovation to maximize product lifecycles and bring new cutting-edge solutions to market that are interoperable with legacy systems. 

Partnering with Celestica enables OEMs to meet those objectives and gain advantages of cost, performance and speed-to-market that improves their competitiveness and positions them for success.

Learn more about our aerospace and defense capabilities.