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A Case for an International Consortium on System-of-Systems Engineering
Dan De Laurentis, Charles Dickerson, Michael DiMario, Member, IEEE, Paul Gartz, Senior Member, IEEE, Mo M. Jamshidi, Fellow, IEEE, Saeid Nahavandi, Senior Member, IEEE, Andrew P. Sage, Life Fellow, IEEE, Elliot B. Sloane, Senior Member, IEEE, and Donald R. WalkerAbstract—A system-of-systems (SoS) conceptualization is essential in resolving issues involving heterogeneous independently operable systems to achieve a unique purpose. Successful operation as an SoS requires communication among appropriate individuals and groups across enterprises through an effective protocol. This paper presents a position on the creation of a consortium of concerned systemengineers and scientists worldwide to examine the problems and solutions strategies associated with SoS. The consortium could lead efforts in clarifying ambiguities and in seeking remedies to numerous open questions with respect to SoS analysis, SoS engineering (SoSE), as well as differences between systems engineering (SE) and SoSE. The mission of this consortium is envisioned to: 1) act as aneutral party; 2) provide a forum to put forth Calls to Action; and 3) establish a community of interest to recommend a set of solutions. Index Terms—Academia, consortium, government, IEEE, INCOSE, industry, military, system-of-systems (SoS).


of the concept of system-of-systems engineering (SoSE). SoSE presents new challenges that are related to, but distinct from, systemsengineering (SE) challenges. By understanding these differences, appropriate methods, tools, and standards can be crafted in an intelligent manner. There has been a simultaneous recognition that significant organizational changes are needed in governments and industries, especially in the aerospace and defense areas, to realize these capabilities. The importance of having a group of systems workingtogether as opposed to a single system is to increase the capability, robustness, and efficiency of data aggregation. In the U.S., major aerospace and defense manufacturers, including (but not limited to) Boeing, Lockheed–Martin, Northrop–Grumman, Raytheon, and BAE Systems, etc., all include some version of “large-scale systems integration” as a key part of their business strategies. In some cases,these companies have even established entire business units dedicated to systems integration activities [2]. II. PROPOSED CONSORTIUM A. Mission The mission for the International Consortium for System of Systems (ICSOS) is to create a community of interest among science and engineering researchers and to foster proposals and solutions to advance the enhancement of SE to SoSE. B. Objective

RECENTLY, there has been a notably growing interest in system-of-systems (SoS) concepts and strategies. The performance optimization among groups of heterogeneous systems in order to realize a common goal has become the focus of various application areas including military, security, aerospace, and disaster management [1]–[4]. There is particular interest in achieving synergy between these independentsystems to enable the desired overall system performance [5]. In the literature, researchers have begun to address the issue of coordination and interoperability in an SoS [2], [5], [6] pointing to the emergence

Manuscript received April 27, 2007; revised May 30, 2007 and June 22, 2007. D. De Laurentis is with the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN47907 USA (e-mail: C. Dickerson is with the Operating Group, BAE Systems, Reston, VA 20190 USA. M. DiMario is with the MS2 Mission Systems, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Moorestown, NJ 08057 USA. P. Gartz is with the Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Seattle, WA 97001 USA. M. M. Jamshidi is with the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, University of Texas, San Antonio, TX...
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