Istari Secures Contract for US Air Force ‘Digital Twin’ Program

Engineering firm Istari Digital has received a $15-million contract to support the US Air Force’s Model One program.

Led by air force innovation arm AFWERX, Model One is an effort to produce “digital twin” technology that stores and manufactures replicas of physical objects as well as their corresponding features in a virtual environment.

Istari wrote that it will provide a proprietary “plug-and-play platform” that will enable “real-time, digital collaboration across difficult-to-integrate data types.”

The solution will be used to consolidate and secure data of models and simulations associated with the development of the service’s future capabilities.

“Digital transformation is rapidly accelerating industries, from medical devices to monohull racing boats,” Istari Digital President Dr. Will Roper explained. But the challenges of disparate intellectual property and classified data have made it difficult for Defense to follow in their wakes.”

“This latest contract demonstrates our commitment to breakthrough data-meshing solutions and our customers’ confidence in leveraging them.”

In Digital Aircraft Development

The US Air Force first employed Istari’s digital twin solution on a separate program in 2023 dubbed Flyer Øne, which explored the utility of modern engineering processes to support fixed-wing aircraft manufacturing from design to final airworthiness certification.

The system resulting from this $19.2-million initiative is expected to be the first digitally certified aircraft for real-world flight.

“Digital engineering will not revolutionize aerospace overnight, nor make mistakes magically disappear,” Roper said during the Flyer Øne contract award.

“But industries, from Formula 1 racing to medical devices, keep demonstrating amazing digital transformations. It’s time for aerospace to push the boundaries of its digital possibilities.”

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