Magazine article National Defense

Cost of Simulators Driven by Development of Digital Databases

Magazine article National Defense

Cost of Simulators Driven by Development of Digital Databases

Article excerpt

Despite a significant drop in the prices of computer chips in recent years, building advanced military simulators remains costly, because most of the expense involves the development of digital databases, said James R. Oyler, president and chief executive officer of Evans & Sutherland Computer Corporation, in Salt Lake City.

"The cost of a simulator remains high, because mechanical systems and software don't follow Moore's law," Oyler told an industry conference in Tysons Corner, Va. "Electronic components are 10 to 15 percent of the cost of a simulator." Moore's law is a widely used term in the industry to describe the phenomenon by which computer processors become increasingly more powerful and less costly within 18-month cycles.

Another reason why military systems are expensive is the low-quantity orders, he said. The popular Sony PlayStation 2-a joint venture of Sony and Toshiba-cost $100 million to develop, said Oyler. "So you can only make it in that business if you have high volume of sales."

Some believe that a top-of-the-line video game, with Hollywood production-style features is expected to cost $50 million. "You can only justify that with high volume," he said. The databases are costly to build. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.