Systems Engineering Approaches for Interagency Space Situational Awareness
Systems Engineering and Systems Management Transformation
Dr. Michael Orosz
While researchers have identified algorithms to improve space situational awareness through dynamic cross-cueing of different sensors, these approaches do not address the system engineering challenges of linking the tasking and data processing of multiple different sensors operated by different organizations under the authority of different chains of command. The Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community have established the National Space Defense Center (NSDC) as an interagency collaborative planning and tasking activity to operate across these organizations, but for the NSDC to be effective, it will require novel systems engineering solutions to the interagency space situational awareness challenges.
The USC-ISI researchers shall investigate the implementation of data integration and exploitation as well as sensor tasking and cueing for next-generation space situational awareness sensors via the interagency National Space Defense Center (NSDC). The researchers shall explore applications of cloud computing and other technology solutions to this environment, consider the cyber and operational defense aspects of the operating environment, and provide fundamental research insights related to space superiority including developing robust solutions through advanced systems engineering and deployment of life-cycle processes. The researchers shall work with the sponsor’s Los Angeles-based team to develop improved methods for evaluating and recommending alternative design and testing approaches for the Space-Based Space Surveillance Follow-On (SBSS FO) and other space superiority programs. These methods shall be compatible with the Department of Defense’s vision for the NSDC operation. The researchers shall assess the results of demonstration and experimentation activities to integrate tasking and processing for sensors from multiple agencies, and use this information to improve the proposed design and testing methods.
The effort will be composed of the following two research tasks:
1.1 SYSTEM OF SYSTEMS REQUIREMENTS DECOMPOSITION
USC-ISI shall research the appropriate requirements distribution and decomposition across the classes of sensor and processing systems that make up the interagency space situational awareness (SSA) architecture using the SBSS FO program as an exemplar. USC-ISI shall assess the unique aspects of the interagency SSA environment to identify requirements and interfaces unique to that interagency environment. USC-ISI shall recommend demonstration and prototyping approaches that will enable future research and evaluation of the role of component systems and interfaces in the end-to-end interagency decision maker – tasking – sensing – data processing – decision making loop. Throughout the research, USC-ISI shall consider cyber and operational defense aspects of the operating environment, and provide fundamental research insights related to space superiority including developing robust solutions through advanced systems engineering and deployment life-cycle processes.
1.2 DEMONSTRATION AND EXPERIMENTATION
USC-ISI shall research and develop a demonstration and experimentation approach to evaluate mechanisms to rapidly and effectively integrate additional interagency sensors into the interagency SSA and command and control architecture. USC-ISI shall research and recommend specific demonstration objectives and identify possible demonstration and experimentation opportunities. USC-ISI shall assess relevant government-run demonstrations and experiments to recommend improvements to system engineering methodologies, requirements allocation, verification and validation strategies, and to assess risks and opportunities as it applies to system engineering of interagency systems of systems
The USC/ISI researchers will need access to information classified at the SECRET level in order to do this research.