SCA 4.1

The Software Communications Architecture (SCA) version 4.1 is the latest release of the SCA specifications from the Joint Tactical Networking Center (JTNC).

Published in August 2015, SCA v4.1 provides substantial improvements to the earlier SCA v2.2.2 specification.

  • SCA 4.1 Profiles

    With SCA 4.1, implementers can tailor the SCA set of features to better match their radio requirements. As such, three profiles have been defined:

    • SCA Lightweight Profile
      • Best suited for radio platforms where the hardware modules have a static configuration.
      • Provides a minimum set of functionality which is applicable for resource (e.g. SWAP) constrained platforms.
    • SCA Medium Profile
      • Suited for radio platforms with plug-and-play but not removable hardware modules.
      • Still rather lightweight but it introduces a configurable, dynamic aspect.
      • The most flexible platform in that it provides the lightest weight implementation that supports the legacy SCA deployment model.
    • SCA Full Profile
      • Suited for radio platforms with removable, plug-and-play hardware modules.
      • Provides the full breadth of SCA deployment and management capabilities
      • Aligned to support prime power, multi-channel sets
  • SCA 4.1 Resource Constrained Processors
    • Component scalability
      • Allow component developers to choose whether or not to implement some of the standard sub-component interface. The scalability will also be used to support the different profiles of the specification.
    • Scalability of the manager components
      • Allow developers to choose whether or not to implement all of the manager interfaces. The manager scalability will also be used to support the different profiles of the specification
    • Minimal ultra-Lightweight (uLw) AEP definition
      • Provides minimal uLw specification with optional grouping to extend capability
  • SCA 4.1 Enhanced Information Assurance
    • Design patterns and strategies incorporate security awareness
    • Remove ability for a component to query information that could be inappropriately used
    • Harder to get an object reference to the DomainManager and learn about the system
    • Naming Service deleted
  • SCA 4.1 Improved Performance
    • Faster Boot Times due to Port Connection improvements
      • Allows faster connections, reducing waveform startup boot time
      • Permits connections to be defined at build time…Reduces startup and security issues
  • SCA 4.1 Testability Improvements
    • Total test time reduced based on profile implemented
      • Cost of increase test coverage complexity
    • Units of functionality and multiple base AEP profiles with optional function groups allow crisper test definitions
  • SCA 4.1 Reduced Development Cost
    • Static analysis tools will have more prominence
      • Test all paths in the code
      • Find errors much earlier in the development process.
      • Provide immediate assistance by linking errors directly to the specification -this is a good way to “teach” the spec as code is being written.
    • Requirements cleanup
      • Reduced number of requirements
      • Removal of some redundant requirements
  • SCA 4.1 Improved Portability of Waveform Design
    • Specification of PIM (Platform Independent Model) IDL Profiles
      • Full Profile
      • Ulw Profile
    • Rationalization of PSM (Platform Specific Model) IDL Profiles
    • Expanding scope to PHY Layers
    • Full and Ulw PIM IDL Profile applicable to DSP and FPGA
  • SCA 4.1 Backwards Compatibility with SCA 2.2.2
    • SCA 4.1 ensures investment in SCA 2.2.2 applications can be reused in SCA 4.1 environment
      • An SCA 4.1 can now run any SCA 2.2.2 applications
      • Required several changes to SCAv4.1 to keep new features and still be backwards compatible
      • NordiaSoft led this effort for JTNC on behalf of WInnF
    • Support for applications composed of a mixture of SCA 4.1 and SCA 2.2.2 components.
      • Allow developers to perform a more incremental transition from SCA 2.2.2 to SCA 4.1
    • Enhance the ability to migrate legacy waveforms to an SCA model
      • Naming convention changes

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