Message Analysis and Data Reduction for the Integration of Links (MANDRIL)


MANDRIL - enhances productivity in interoperability analysis

Lockheed Martin UK has developed an integrated suite of software to interpret and analyse message data flows within Tactical Data Links. The suite is used as a key component in Interoperability and Network Analysis, System Testing, and Performance Assessment. The suite runs on a standard PC running Microsoft Windows® with Microsoft® Excel.

MANDRIL is a key component of the iSMART process and the de facto standard for interoperability analysis. The three components of MANDRIL are integrated together to provide a powerful suite of tools for datalink interoperability analysis. The rich feature set allows thorough analysis of data files using spreadsheet, graphical and rule-based approaches.

  • Integrated suite of software programs for analysing link data recordings
  • Key component of the iSMART process
  • Proven Internationally for finding and resolving interoperability problems throughout system lifecycle


  • Multi-Link, Multi-Terminal compatible
  • Powerful spreadsheeting and graph plotting tools
  • Real-time animation of scenario data
  • Rule-based automated analysis for rapid identification of problems
  • Comprehensive support and training package


Powerful spreadsheeting and graph plotting tools
MANDRIL is multi-link compatible, with the capability to decode messages from several link types. The input to MANDRIL is a data file containing the recorded messages or data blocks. A wide range of different file formats (>50) can be handled depending on terminal type, link type and the source of recording. Messages are decoded into a spreadsheet format for ease of analysis via a rich feature set of spreadsheet functions and graph plotting.

The Message Analysis Component of MANDRIL decodes the recorded messages and puts the results into custom spreadsheets. Filters can be applied e.g. by time slice, by Source Track Number or by message type. Each spreadsheet provides a decode of each message or data block type with output in readable English format (i.e. using field value names rather than numbers. In this form the data can be analysed further using the powerful built-in Excel tools.)

Statistical Analysis by message type and STN

MANDRIL automates key interoperability analysis tasks to provide insight into mission system operation.

  • Automated trending analysis
    • Time and position quality analysis
    • RADAR correlations
    • Geospatial analysis
  • Automated statistical analysis
    • Reports distribution of messages over
      key network parameters
  • Automated requirements compliance
    • Implementation checking to bit level
    • Word sequence and update rate checks
    • Track position and correlation checks

TRACKS - Real-time animation of scenario data (2D and 3D)
The track animation component allows replay of a message recording with track positions plotted against a background map. The tracks may be selected to move in real-time, speeded-up or slowed-down. The different track types are distinguished with different symbology (e.g. Surveillance, PPLI, Target Sorting, Identity, Exercise and TN) and velocity vectors indicate the direction and speed of each track. Portions of the display can be selected to zoom in to examine particular features. Tracks may be hooked to give one or more tote displays to give detailed information about the tracks.

  • DTED terrain data may be overlain on background map
  • Visibility of terrain calculations to highlight masking effect for radar
  • Intervisibility calculations of tracks to assess link connectivity
  • 3D animation and trails for exercise de-briefs
  • User configurable track symbols
  • Track totes display detailed data from tracks

AUTO-ANALYSIS - Rule-based automated analysis for rapid identification of problems
The auto-analysis component analyses Link 16 and Link 11 message data for problems according to pre-defined rules. These rules can include the transmit and receive rules of the STANAG message catalogue and the field implementation contained in the Implementation Plan for a specific platform.

Sets of rules according to the various STANAGS are available and a link to the Lockheed Martin UK eDLPI allows creation of implementation plans for any platform in the database.

A user-friendly interface is provided to create and edit additional rules in defined categories. Rule lists may then be saved for subsequent testing of message files. The program outputs a list of exceptions against the rules, for example a list of track messages which fall outside the defined repetition rate. The exceptions are matched with the full decode for further analysis.

User configurable rule checks for:

  • Word Sequences
  • Receipt Compliance Protocols
  • Positional Accuracy
  • Periodic Update Rates
  • Reporting Responsibility (R2)
  • Track Correlation
  • Message, word and field value checks against Implementation Plans
  • Output integrated with MANDRIL worksheets and Tracks display
  • Drill down to message exceptions with a mouse-click

Documentation & Training
A comprehensive user guide and on-line help is provided with the software. A video-based tutorial is also supplied which gives user-paced in-depth demonstrations of all the main features of the program. A training course can be supplied which provides formal instruction from experienced analysts on all aspects of the program and the techniques of data analysis. The training incorporates a balance of lectures and hands-on exercises to familiarise users with the MANDRIL suite.


Data link and terminal types handled include:

Data Links

  • Link 16 (TADIL J)
  • Link 11 (TADIL A)
  • Link 11B (TADIL B)
  • VMF
  • IP and XML enabled



  • JTIDS Class 2
  • URC-138



  • Wide range of
    data input formats
  • Numerical and
    graphical output formats
  • Hyperlinks for navigation
    between block decodes
  • Message formats are easily
    updated and extended
  • Graph plotting wizard with
    pre-defined graph types