Towards RPR FOM 3: Revisiting the Datatypes

ABSTRACT: Version 2 of the Real-time Platform Reference FOM (RPR FOM) has recently been finalized. It is the most widely used FOM for defense simulations. The original purpose of the RPR FOM was to facilitate interoperability between the DIS protocol and HLA federations. Today it is often also used as a common basis for further adaptation and extensions in US and NATO federations.

One of the main goals of the final phase of the RPR FOM 2 development was to maintain buffer compatibility with the widely used draft 17 of the RPR FOM 2. This in turn carries a lot of heritage from both the DIS protocol and the HLA version 1.3, including many convoluted data buffer layouts. Today these may not be seen as striking the best balance between low bandwidth utilization, simple encoding and decoding, flexibility and extensibility.

Now the time may have come to revisit the RPR FOM data representations for RPR FOM version 3. In addition to the
reviewing the record data structures, a goal could be to remove the RPR FOM specific datatype encodings such as the length less array representations. Furthermore, an attempt to generate the Enumerations module from the SISO-REF010 XML source showed that some enumerations may need to be reconsidered or moved to other modules. The RPR FOM 2 work has also revealed that some new datatypes may need to be added to the HLA standard, in particular to represent unsigned integers that are used in DIS.

This paper provides an analysis and recommendation for the RPR FOM 3 development and to some extent for the next version of HLA.

Authors: Björn Möller, Aaron Dubois, Patrice Le Leydour, Graham Shanks, René Verhage, Fredrik Antelius
Publication: Proceedings of 2015 Fall Simulation Interoperability Workshop, 15F-SIW-039, Simulation Interoperability
Standards Organization, September 2015

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