DARPA seeks to map 'systems of systems'

What: The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency plans to release a broad agency announcement for mathematical tools to better map complex "systems of systems."

Why: Systems of systems -- such as those that integrate manned and unmanned aircraft or support "smart cities" -- hold great promise for integrating several types of functions, but DARPA officials see room for improvement.

Such systems are "difficult to model and cannot be systematically designed using today's tools," DARPA officials said in release.

Therefore, they are looking for advances in areas that include applied mathematics, operations research, search and rescue platforms, resilient urban infrastructure and modeling that is "responsive to challenges in battlefield medicine logistics."

DARPA will host a Proposers Day on Dec. 9 in Arlington, Va. The agency expects to issue its broad agency announcement soon.

The initiatives fall under a program called the Complex Adaptive System Composition and Design Environment, which seeks "a deeper understanding of system component interactions and a unified view of system behaviors." The program's goals also include developing a formal language for designing complex systems.

"CASCADE aims to fundamentally change how we design systems for real-time resilient response within dynamic, unexpected environments," DARPA Program Manager John Paschkewitz said in a statement. "Existing modeling and design tools invoke static 'playbook' concepts that don't adequately represent the complexity of, say, an airborne system of systems with its constantly changing variables, such as enemy jamming, bad weather, or loss of one or more aircraft."

Click here to read more about the Proposers Day.

Posted by Sean Lyngaas on Nov 24, 2015 at 12:07 PM


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