Advanced System Safety Engineering to Increase Autonomous System Dependability and Reliability

NCMS Project #: 142177

Problem: The maintenance and sustainment of a new integrated autonomous system made of disparate hardware and software components is usually an afterthought.  The best modification design solutions consider how a full vehicle or system’s reliability will be impacted by a modification or new component installation and how the change may affect the maintenance and sustainment of the host platform.  For the Department of Defense (DOD), the integration of unique autonomy technologies onto legacy systems provides similar challenges which advanced commercial technologies and best digital engineering and integration practices can help solve.

Benefit: This pilot will prove the feasibility for new systems safety and model-based systems engineering methods and tools that can be applied to other commercial and military autonomous systems in a manner that that maximizes system reliability, maintainability, and safety.

Solution/Approach: The intent of this initiative is to advance the state of the art in systems safety and model-based systems engineering tools to explore new methods that will ensure complex hardware and software components and subsystems can be properly and safely integrated into a full autonomous system.  Using the Army’s Robotic Combat Vehicle (RCV) as a surrogate, this initiative will integrate autonomous system hardware and software using new approaches that will result in an integrated autonomous system that is safe, reliable, and easy to maintain.

Impact on Warfighter:

  • Increase warfighter flexibility and agility 
  • Reduce time to integrate new hardware/software capabilities 
  • Decrease labor and fuel costs 
  • Improve warfighter safety 

DOD Participation:

  • U.S. Army Project Manager, Maneuver Combat Systems 
  • Product Manager, Robotic Combat Vehicles 
  • Combat Capabilities Development Command (DEVCOM), Ground Vehicle System Center (GVSC) 

Industry Participation:

  • Ricardo Defense, Inc.
  • NCMS

Benefit Area(s):

  • Cost savings
  • Repair turn-around time
  • Maintenance avoidance and reliability
  • Safety
  • Reliability improvement

Focus Area:

  • Business IT and analytics

Final Report