Development of an Instrumentation Hardware Abstraction Layer Specification and Workbench
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418 Washington St., S.E., Albuquerque, NM, 87108
AbstractTraditionally, T&E engineers specify instrumentation attributes through Instrumentation Support Systems (ISS), which in turn load these attributes into the instruments using custom software instrument drivers. Though this process works, it demands time consuming and costly development of ISS-specific user interfaces as well as instrument and vendor-specific load module generators, in order to accomplish the desired instrument configuration and resulting data collection. The problem with this method is that every ISS must support every instrument with custom interfaces and instrument drivers. A better approach is to communicate with the instruments through a Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL). In theory the HAL specification defines a common interface to various instruments, without specifying the particular instrument or instrument vendor, obviating the need for custom instrument drivers altogether. The objective of this effort is to determine the feasibility, and development of a HAL specification and development of a HAL Workbench. The Workbench will enable and support instrumentation developers and manufacturers to develop HAL instrument drivers, and check the HAL compatibility and compliance of their products. In Phase I, Voss Scientific's technical team (including EMC Corporation and Teletronics Technology Corporation) will produce a preliminary HAL specification and demonstrate first order hardware abstraction.
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