Real Time Monitoring and Test Vector Generation for Improved Flight Safety

Period of Performance: 01/01/2006 - 12/31/2006

$600K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Barron Assoc., Inc.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA 22901
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Abstract

As the complexity of flight controllers grows so does the cost associated with verification and validation (V&V). Current-generation controllers are reaching levels of complexity that push the envelopes of existing V&V approaches, and further increases in controller complexity are required to provide the operational capabilities desired for next generation systems. Without improved approaches, there is little hope for affordable V&V of next-generation intelligent systems and, unfortunately, controller validation is required to ensure the safety of these systems. Barron Associates proposes an aggressive plan of research to develop monitoring algorithms that estimate, in real time, safety margins of complex feedback systems based on observed differences between the model used for controller development and actual flight data. The Phase II research will focus on the flight test environment where these algorithms will allow the flight test engineer to monitor and revise the test plan in real time - accelerating the test-matrix buildup when safety is assured and avoiding test points where safety is questionable. The tool will also recommend test points that could help refine safety margin estimates for as yet unexecuted maneuvers. The result will be reduced flight test costs and improved safety.