The VehicleFORGE platform is a web-based, collaborative design environment based loosely on the concept of modern day software ‘forges’ (e.g., SourceForge, forge.mil, etc.). The purpose of VehicleFORGE within AVM is to provide a common platform for design event participants to team, collaborate and submit designs for testing. As such, it is also the portal for accessing META design tools, iFAB manufacturability tools, C2M2L models and generated system designs. VehicleFORGE has been developed with an extensible architecture that allows plugins to be developed for specific tasks. To date, plugins exist for CAD visualization, project design trade space exploration and scoring analysis based on virtual testing. In addition to these context-aware and context-specific forge elements, each project has a built-in virtual workshop in the form of a 3-D immersive environment with rich visualization capabilities. The VehicleFORGE platform, hosted on a private cloud at Vanderbilt University, is highly scalable, fault tolerant, and flexible.
The year one VehicleFORGE effort was organized into the following technical areas:
- (VFCE) VehicleFORGE Candidate Environments: multiple versions of an open source development collaboration environment and website implementation
- (TF-SA) TrustFORGE (Stand-Alone): credentialing and verification algoithms for ensuring trusted contributions to open source development projects such as those hosted by VehicleFORGE
Soon after the year one effort, DARPA selected one of the three candidate VehicleFORGE environments for implementation, but also recognized the need to add a user-friendly 3-D visualization engine to enhance the collaborative design environment provided by VehicleFORGE.
- (VCDE-SA) Virtual Collaborative Design Environment (Stand-Alone): a high-fidelity collaborative space intended for integration within VehicleFORGE for 3-D visualization of complex system designs across a product team
Successive VehicleFORGE efforts have been focused on integrating TrustFORGE and VCDE as well as enabling execution of design events, such as the first Fast Adaptable Next-Generation Ground Vehicle (FANG) Challenge, and incorporating additional feature sets.
- (VF-FANG1) VehicleFORGE Environment as implemented in DARPA FANG Challenge 1, with integrated TrustFORGE and VCDE