Our Mission: Always to be at the Forefront of Invention
With over 30 years experience developing critical system software for aerospace applications, this is the company's original area of expertise. We specialise in software for satellites including many of the European Space Agency science missions. On-board applications include: operating systems, avionics, telecommunications, instrumentation, data handling and storage, systems control, error and failure handling. The software is created using strict development methodologies to guarantee high quality and maintainability.
CAPTEC develops customized turn-key applications and systems for a wide range of clients in industry, government and research,including telecommunications, digital imaging, control systems, remote sensing, man-machine interface, data acquisition, image processing, data compression, bar coding and process control. We work with the customer to define their requirements in order to provide quality and customer satisfaction. We also provide on-going support and training.
Increased software reliability, customer confidence and reduced maintenance costs are significant benefits provided by independent software validation and verification. CAPTEC undertakes ISVV on mission critical systems produced by the customer or another developer. Currently, ISVV is required on software for aerospace and transport systems but as software quality becomes increasingly important in other areas such as automotive, banking, biomedical, we anticipate that this sector will evolve rapidly.
CAPTEC has developed its own high-speed imaging toolset which is available as the MAVIS software library for use in application areas such as : Medical imaging, remote sensing, microscopy analysis and automated inspection for manufacturing.
The patented RICAZIP image compression method achieves state of the art compression ratios at high speed and guarantees exact reconstruction of the original image format without any loss.
The CARDICON product developed by CAPTEC is a medical imaging system used for teleconferencing and remote diagnosis in conjunction with diagnostic imaging data. This system is currently installed in a network of hospitals in Ireland. It provides real-time teleconferencing facilities for cardiologists enabling patient treatment decisions and transfers of patients for surgery to be more efficient.
CAPTEC engages in joint research and development projects with partners in industry, university and government. Examples of technology development projects range from image analysis, image compression, machine vision, man-machine interfaces, telecommunications, and data processing for applications in various domains such as : medical, manufacturing, air traffic control, aircraft cockpit, agriculture and pharmaceutical.
The team and its capabilities.
Equipped with a technical team comprised of engineers, mathematicians and scientists adding up to 100 man years of experience, CAPTEC has accumulated a wide range of knowledge including :
- Processing platforms : Intel, Motorola, 1750A, ERC32 and 21020 DSP
- Operating systems : UNIX, Microsoft, VMS, RTEMS (Real-time operating system for spacecraft)
- Languages : C++, C, ANSI-C, ADA, Assembler for a wide range of processors.
- Databases :
- Methodologies : Waterfall, Rational/UML, Agile, Scrum.
- Software development life cycle compliant with the ECSS-E-40 and ECSS-Q-80 Software Engineering Standards.
- Standards and norms : PSS-05, ECSS-E-40, ECSS-Q-80 for space, HL/7 and DICOM for medical systems.
- Development and test tools: Open source (gcc, source control) and Commercial (Matlab / Simulink, Rational Rose, IPL Cantata, McCabe IQ, Polyspace Verifier, IPL AdaTEST, TSim, Understand for C)
- Proprietary in-house (configuration control, tracing, problem handling) Mission Specific SDE, SVF & simulators
- Cooperative working: Industrial consortia, joint R&D contracts, NDAs.
- Intellectual property, patenting, licensing and trademarks.
- Group software.
Managing Director. Jon has been involved in CAPTEC since its creation in 1979.
Space Project Manager. Richard expertise lies in onboard software development and ISVV.
ADA LANGUAGEAda, designed for the US Department Of Defence, is a structured object-oriented language with features that makes it highly suitable for critical real-time software applications in space. Starting with the infrared solar observatory mission, CAPTEC pioneered the use of ADA language for European Space Agency projects.
Independent Software ValidationFor the Huygens Probe, part of the NASA Cassini mission to Titan, a moon of Jupiter, CAPTEC conducted the first ISVV project undertaken by ESA. It produced significant mission critical benefits and CAPTEC was recognised by both ESA and NASA for its contribution to the success of the mission. Since then, ISVV has become a standard part of all the agency's missions and the company continues to provide this service to many of the science missions.
Image compressionThe RicaZIP lossless image compression method invented by CAPTEC uses a unique binary prediction technology to provide unsurpassed compression ratios at exceptional speeds due to low algorithmic complexity. In an open competition, for the European Agency's technical research division RicaZIP achieved the best overall result. Clients such as Johnson & Johnson have found that RicaZIP can achieve better compression ratios, and operates significantly faster than wavelet based methods.
Advanced researchIn cooperative Research projects, CAPTEC has developed new technologies for man-machine interfaces. These have been applied in flight deck instrumentation and air traffic control workstations in the FANSTIC and SWIFT projects. We are motivated by the challenge to engineer software that is crafted to meet the individual requirements of its clients.
CAPTEC is a respected participant with major European industrial and university partners in cooperative research programmes sponsored by the Commission of the European Communities.
A brief history
CAPTEC is an Irish-owned company founded in 1979, located in Malahide, Co. Dublin.
CAPTEC was set up in 1979 By Fred Kennedy who was keen to pursue his passion for aerospace projects, having been involved since the 1950s in the early use of computers for the design of supersonic aircraft, missile defence systems and notably the winning proposal for the Lunar Lander for NASA's Apollo programme while working at RCA. In the wake of Ireland's decision to join the EEC, he was an advocate for the country's participation in the European Space Agency. Seeing the opportunities it would offer, with his new company he successfully built up a good reputation through significant involvement in their operational space programmes.
Since Fred's retirement in 2012, his son Jon Kennedy has taken over the business and has continued the tradition of providing our recognised high quality services to the Aerospace industry, with the vision to expand into new areas.
CAPTEC staff in front of the office in Malahide, in 1985