Lynx joins AdaCore and Ferrous Systems to bring Rust to developers

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Lynx Software Technologies (Lynx) has announced that its LynxOS-178 operating system and LynxElement unikernel will now include support for Rust.

Rust is a systems programming language that is designed for performance and memory safety and Lynx has partnered with AdaCore, a provider of commercial software solutions for Ada, C and C++ languages, and Ferrous Systems, a provider of safety-critical and certified toolchains for Rust users.

Rust is a programming language designed around performance, safety and concurrency. Specifically, Rust ensures memory safety at compile time, meaning that all references point to valid memory without using separate methodologies found in other programming languages.

A relatively new programming language Rust is, however, developing significant momentum, especially in the mission- and safety-critical embedded software market, including the automotive and aerospace industries.

Recently, Azure CTO Mark Russinovich declared in a Twitter post that new projects should “halt starting projects in C/C++” in favour of Rust where garbage collection is not permissible. Second, Rust reached a milestone that C++ could not by getting incorporated into the Linux kernel.

Earlier this year, Ferrous Systems and AdaCore joined forces to develop the Ferrocene compiler toolchain, with the goal of supporting the needs of various regulated markets, such as automotive, avionics, space, and railway. In particular, Ferrocene is looking to provide the necessary qualification and certification artifacts for their respective markets.

Lynx said that it sees Rust and Ferrocene as key components to modernise the way embedded systems are developed and as a result have incorporated support for them in its flagship products to enable the development of safer code.

“The alignment across the missions of AdaCore, Ferrous Systems and Lynx Software Technologies is clear to see,” said Tim Reed, CEO, Lynx Software Technologies. “Similar to our long tradition of enabling the development of mission- and safety-critical systems, AdaCore has a successful history as a trusted supplier of certified toolchains and Ferrous Systems brings a wealth of knowledge and promising track record of helping developers adopt Rust into their embedded software systems. We believe the combination of our respective offerings will enable the industry to bring safer systems to market quickly.” 

“Demand for safety, security, and reliability in programming languages is at an all-time high,” said Quentin Ochem, Chief Product Officer at AdaCore. “Rust is one of the best options available to enable all three without impeding efficiency. Together with the currently supported Ada and SPARK languages, this makes the LynxOS-178 operating system one of the most advanced platforms for running demanding, long-lived, mission-critical applications.”

LynxOS-178 is a native POSIX, hard real-time partitioning operating system developed and certified to FAA DO-178C DAL A safety standards. It is the primary host for real-time POSIX and FACE applications within the LYNX MOSA.ic development and integration framework.

LynxElement, which was also announced earlier this year, is the industry’s first unikernel to be POSIX compatible and available for commercial use. LynxElement is offered as part of the LYNX MOSA.ic portfolio of products for a diverse set of mission-critical use cases.