The Arcadia engineering method mainly focuses on functional analysis, complex architecture definition and early validation. It is highly extensible and customizable through viewpoints providing integrated specialty engineering support. Both the method (which is going to be published and standardized) and the Capella ecosystem are already operationally deployed within Thales in defense, aerospace, space, transportation and security business domains, across several countries, thanks to a large-scale rollout of model-based approaches, with hundreds of daily users worldwide, on critical operational projects.
Figure 2. Arcadia / Capella engineering phases
Figure 3. Capella methodological browser
To improve quality, productivity, agility and flexibility of the engineering activities, Capella provides means to:
- Ensure an engineering-wide collaboration with all stakeholders sharing the same reference architecture, including architects and engineers for system and subsystems, development teams, specialty engineers (e.g. interfaces design, performance, security, RAMS -- Reliability Availability Maintainability and Safety --, costs, mass, product line, etc.), integration and validation, customer, etc.
- Master the complexity of systems and architectures to be developed by enforcing a built-in multi-level engineering and by separating engineering concerns while ensuring their integration in the reference architecture.
- Define the best optimal architectures through trade-off analysis: Validate the architecture early in the development cycle, hence dramatically reducing re-engineering costs by evaluating the architecture design in short decision loops according to different integrated concerns.
- Master transitions and traceability, through automated transition and information refinement, while providing means to maintain information consistency and to analyze the impact of modifications, inside and between different engineering phases, and between system and subsystems.
Figure 4. Architecture early validation principles using viewpoints with Capella
Figure 5. Viewpoints at work with Capella to early validate architectures
The system and subsystems Capella architecture models are intended to be the reference for most engineering activities. However, Capella fits into a wider engineering landscape, as bridges can be developed to:
- Initialize Capella models from upstream engineering outputs (typically coming from Architecture Frameworks such as NAF)
- Confront architecture models to specialty engineering tools (performance, safety, etc.)
- Iteratively populate downstream engineering (subsystems, code generation, etc.)
Figure 6. Capella big picture