Systems - Agent Design Environment (Sys-ADE)

Award Information
Department of Defense
Defense Threat Reduction Agency
Award Year:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
DTRA 10-001
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
21st Century Systems, Incorporated
6825 Pine Street, Suite 141, Omaha, NE, 68106
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Robert Woodley
Senior Scientist
(573) 329-8526
Business Contact:
Stuart Aldridge
Sr. VP, Res & Dev
(402) 505-7887
Research Institution:
OBJECTIVE: Current Software and System Engineering (SSE) methodologies for Human System Integration provide a process or sets of processes by which to develop a SSE-HSI scheme of how one integrates humans, operations, systems, and technical perspectives with requirements, analysis, and verification for a complete systems picture. What is missing is the ability to do this with an easy-to-use template, especially for those who are not "engineering or non-technically inclined." This is becoming more significant as DoD becomes involved with NGO/USGA mission partners in Irregular Warfare-Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief efforts. Standard guidelines and methodologies provide logical sequences to show concurrent and iterative SSE processes of human system integration design, e.g., how one activity will impact others in the design process(es). However, the SSE-HSI architectural design requires one to know how to build engineering schemes, understand functional allocations, and use proper engineering/technical symbols for process/work flow. Therefore, the objective is to create forms or templates to easily formulate a human-system integration architectural design without engineering or technical expertise. The concept should be similar to that of commercial tax preparation software (e.g., Turbo Tax, etc.). Tax preparation software provides a software package that easily steps an individual through the proper forms or templates to use; prompts the individual in what information to enter, and updates changes across all appropriate forms or templates without the individual having to be an accountant. The final step of the HSI-SSE process should be a non-technical visual representation of the overall SSE design for Workflow, Test and Evaluation, and Implementation. For example, non-government organizations (NGOs) are testing and evaluating systems alongside DoD for IW-Civil Affairs and have little to no experience in engineering or technical architectural design. This can be seen in the Naval Postgraduate School's RELIEF Program where NGOs test and evaluate their products for such efforts as DoD's Distributed Essential Services in Afghanistan (DES-A) Leveraging Information, Communications and Distributed Power to Build Partner Capacity. The NGOs come together at Camp Roberts with a written MS Word document of how they are going to test and evaluate their products for use with DoD's. The documents are not written in any approved format that DoD recognizes. When the NGO ask for a SSE architectural design form to plug in their workflow, DoD provides the guidance books and references such as the Human System Integration Handbook. Therefore, by providing a refined SSE methodology that incorporates forms/templates with a "step though" type process, the NGO and other mission partners would be able to convert their workflow into something more adaptable that DoD could accept and integrate into their overall planning package. Systems Engineering Tool Recommendation: To effectively and efficiently perform this process, the use of the SSE tool, CORET is highly recommended. CORET provides an integrated SE environment that can support all the tasks that have been identified in this process. If CORE is not used, the task will require multiple tools that will complicate the process in terms of redundancy, traceability and documentation. DESCRIPTION: The evaluation shows that no standard software SSE-HSI modeling methodology is available for the non-technical/engineering user to build architectural designs for effective use by DoD. Most SSE-HSI design workflow is still done through methods of analyses of written standards and guidelines. This current approach continues to produce incompatible human system interfaces; misalignment of operator capabilities or functions; incomplete understanding of underlying infrastructures and gaps in mission; and safety criticality with mission partners. All of the above leads to frequent reengineering of equipment, technologies, weapons, infrastructures, procedures, training, and so forth. Therefore a standard software SSE-HSI modeling methodology facilitated with a suite of templates is required for more efficient human-system/technological development specifically for non-technical/engineering users. Using a standard modeling SSE-HSI methodology for DoD and its mission partners will reduce time, cost and reengineering of equipment or systems by identifying the gaps between the software, hardware, and human functional allocations. Risk Factor: The risk to DTRA is minimal and high in benefit. The intent is to utilize an existing SSE product and refine its methodology by adding easy-to-use forms/templates for implementation/building of SSE-HIS, and an adaptable visualization of the workflow. PHASE I: A software SSE-HSI methodology with supporting executable notations that shows the types of forms and templates to be developed for management and design workflow for SSE-HSI. This software methodology change should show what the templates would look like; the simplicity of use by non-technical/engineering users, and how the results will be represented visually to gaps, critical paths, etc. Develop a proof-of-concept by developing one or two templates and the visualization of the results. PHASE II: Generating an extension of Phase I prototype with an integrated suite or SSE-HSI modeling templates. Notional templates may be: o Concept of Operations (CONOPS) Templates o HSI-SSE Operational Behavior Template: A series of "engineering" steps that would facilitate a suite of modular templates for the user to fill in relative information o Functional Allocations HSI Template: detailed roles, relationships/interfaces o HSI Operational Scenarios Templates for Test and Evaluation o HSI Resource Template for requirements and interface constraints o Visual representation of how to dynamically execute the HIS-SSE architect to show gaps and resolutions. The software SSE-HSI modeling methodology will show adaptive interface(s); show a modular design concept for the suite of templates and show integration between and among the templates. Show proof-of-concept by applying the methodology to a use case. The POC would show how the methodology provides easy of use for non-technical/engineering people. Provides better understanding of the human functional requirements at the onset of the SSE-HSI architectural design for human interoperability across net-centric and net-enabled environments. PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Application of the SSE-HSI modeling methodology with supporting templates (data fields and links) could be user implemented upon completion of Phase II both within the DoD and commercial environment for a number of varied applications, e.g., Irregular Warfare and Rapid Technologies, Biometrics and Countermeasure Integration, Integration of CI Technologies and Human Requirements, Social System Networking and C2, Intelligence Integration of Technologies and Human Interfaces, Humanitarian Assistance/Disaster Relief, etc. REFERENCES: 1. Handbook of Human Systems Integration; Harold R. Booher, ISBN: 978-0-471-02053-0. 2. The Acquisition Process, Human systems integration (HSI), Ensuring design & development meet human performance capability early in acquisition process; James J. Clark and Robert K. Goulder. 3. A Handbook of Software and Systems Engineering: Empirical Observations, Laws and Theories Albert Endres and Dieter Rombach, Addison Wesley, ISBN: 0321154207. 4. Competitive Engineering: A Handbook for Systems Engineering, Requirements Engineering, and Software Engineering Using Planguage, Tom Gilb. 2005 Elsevier. 5. Human-system integration in the system development process: a new look; Richard W. Pew, Anne S. Mavor, Committee on Human-System Design Support, National Research Council, 2008, National Academy Press.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

Agency Micro-sites

SBA logo

Department of Agriculture logo

Department of Commerce logo

Department of Defense logo

Department of Education logo

Department of Energy logo

Department of Health and Human Services logo

Department of Homeland Security logo

Department of Transportation logo

Enviromental Protection Agency logo

National Aeronautics and Space Administration logo

National Science Foundation logo
US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government