The LDRA Tool Suite® Speeds IHI’s Previous Avionics Development Process by Fourteen Times

IHI, the premier manufacturer of jet engines in Japan, chose the LDRA tool suite to verify its avionics software development to DO-178B Level A. To their delight, the IHI engineers found that the LDRA tool suite brought them a 14x speed improvement over previous processes. Given tight development time lines, this was a fabulous finding that gives hopes to other developers.

Wirral, United Kingdom, May 29, 2009 --( Same tool suite voted Best of Show for Embedded Systems Conference in Silicon Valley, USA.

IHI, the premier manufacturer of jet engines in Japan, selected the LDRA tool suite to verify its C and Ada source code for DO-178B certification and were delighted to find that the LDRA tool suite was fourteen times quicker than previous coverage analysis processes. Although IHI selected LDRA’s award-winning tool suite due to its depth and diversity of tools, given the extremely tight development schedule, the speed improvement gained proved a significant factor in the overall success of the project.

With 70% of Japan’s market share, IHI stands as the primary contractor for aircraft engines used by the Ministry of Defense and participates in international cooperative projects developing large- to small-scale engines for civilian aircraft. Because of this market position, IHI is required to meet DO-178B Level A certification, the most rigorous testing standard for avionics software.

Under the DO-178B standard, software verification tools such as LDRA’s tool suite are required to be qualified on a project-by-project basis. In assessing the merits of LDRA tool suite, IHI therefore placed a high value on the quality of vendor assistance for tool qualification. LDRA’s excellent track record of working with clients and the FAA to audit the LDRA tool suite for project use proved a significant factor. IHI wanted to leverage LDRA’s many years in DO-178B certification.

The DO-178B standard details guidelines for the production of software for airborne systems. DO-178B covers the complete software lifecycle: planning, development and integral processes to ensure correctness, control and confidence in the software. The integral processes include requirements traceability, software design, coding, and software verification. To achieve the airworthiness objectives, requirements traceability and testing tools are essential.

“IHI’s choice of LDRA’s tool suite will enable the company to extend its excellence in aircraft engine design,” noted Ian Hennell, Operation Director at LDRA. “Customers need tools that have the flexibility to cope with changing requirements. LDRA’s tool suite automatically maps system changes from requirements through testing.”

Acknowledging the challenge of DO-178B certification, Mr. Osamu Kanmoto, Manager, Control Systems Engineering Group, IHI Corporation, commented, “We had to meet the requirements of DO-178B Level A, which involves testing to Modified Condition Decision Coverage—not an easy task.”

The fourteen times speed improvement IHI enjoyed clearly portrays how the LDRA tool suite has been specifically developed to simplify conformance metrics to the various levels of DO-178B. Reports are tailored to give users DO-178B information quickly and concisely, speeding up the testing procedure. In its implementation, IHI configured and adapted both the LDRA tool suite and its overall development processes to introduce high levels of automation by designing an efficient and repeatable process.

LDRA tool suite v8.0 was released March 2009 at Embedded Systems Conference in Silicon Valley, USA. Eg3, the oldest and largest web portal for embedded systems, applauded LDRA’s announcement as its editor’s choice “Best of Show” award. McDonald, senior editor for eg3, complemented LDRA for providing the first fully automated end-to-end software verification solution on the market. Requirements management is fully integrated into v8.0, providing requirement traceability throughout the software development cycle—a critical cost-cutting capability absolutely essential during this economic downturn.

Thanks to the many benefits the LDRA tool suite offers, IHI now enjoys a significant improvement in its ability to satisfy, audit and review designs due to the automated test coverage process introduced by the LDRA tool suite that supports the unit, module system and integration levels. IHI has future plans to leverage the powerful static analysis capabilities of the LDRA tool suite to gain an objective and quantifiable view of the quality of their source code.

Media contacts:

Janice Hughes, Hughes Communications, Inc., Media Relations
(705) 751-9740, Mobile: (705) 774-8686, Email:

Mark James, LDRA Marketing Manager
Tel: +44 (0)151 649 9300, Email:

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LDRA Software Technology
Mark James
+44 (0)151 649 9300