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The Aerospace Vehicle Systems Institute (AVSI), a research center within the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station, recently renewed a Memorandum of Agreement with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The agreement authorizes funding for FAA participation in AVSI projects for an additional five-year period. 

AVSI is an international research cooperative of leading aircraft manufacturers, systems suppliers, government organizations and research universities. The FAA has been a liaison member of AVSI since 2003. AVSI projects supported by the FAA include research into the challenges posed by use of modern complex microprocessors and other commercial off the shelf (COTS) electronic devices in safety critical aerospace applications and reliability of avionics in severe aerospace environments.

The FAA also actively participates in the AVSI System Architecture Virtual Integration (SAVI) project. This project is investigating technologies necessary to enable virtual integration of aircraft systems in order to reduce the errors traditionally found during physical integration. The project is developing a standard Virtual Integration Process that will allow integrators and multiple suppliers to integrate and test models in an architecture-centric system-modeling environment. Such technologies are necessary to manage the development of increasingly complex aircraft. The FAA’s participation ensures that certifiers will understand these technologies as they are being developed and continue to assure the safety of the aircraft they certify.