Automated Reasoners for Managing Military Aircraft

Period of Performance: 04/18/2006 - 10/25/2006


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Intelligent Automation Corporation
13029 Danielson Street, Suite 200
Poway, CA 92064
Principal Investigator


The Joint Strike Fighter Program (JSF) will produce the most sophisticated warfighter in the history of military aviation. JSF is unique as a major weapons system acquisition program in that the economics of system operation, support, and maintenance are being development concurrently with the technology. The JSF Autonomic Logistics (AL) Program aims to minimize operational and support costs by increasing system reliability, reducing maintenance requirements to essential levels. Using Prognostics and Health Management (PHM), materials are ordered and maintenance is performed only when needed, obviating costly routine scheduled maintenance, and reducing aircraft downtime. This vision of efficiency and responsiveness implies real-time communication between the intelligent air vehicle, industrial contractors and their suppliers, and the aircraft maintenance and support team. All of these entities require access to diagnostics and prognostics based on usage data, operational and life cycle models, and historical information on maintenance to optimize decision making in support of PHM. Here, IAC addresses the need for an intelligent software infrastructure system to manage this complex system. This system features a ontology-enabled, service oriented software architecture for automated reasoners which analyze sensor data, PHM model outputs and past behavior to recommend actions under dynamic and uncertain conditions. BENEFITS: The potential application for this technology within the Federal government is significant. The immediate application will support the Joint Strike Fighter Autonomic Logistics (AL) Program. The software system IAC proposes to design and develop in this research addresses the need to provide near real-time communication between the intelligent air vehicle, industrial contractors and suppliers, ant the aircraft maintenance and support team. This system promises tremendous positive impact on the JSF Program bottom line. In addition, other large acquisitions systems within DoD and other agencies of the United States Government would benefit by using the technologies developed here. IAC is designing software components and services to maximize their potential for reuse with little extra software engineering effort. The system may have considerable potential commercial application in products where intelligent reasoning would enhance decision making on an automatic basis. Business office copiers might benefit by learning rules mapping fault conditions to required maintenance. Desktop computers could warn of impending disk failures. Household appliances and consumer electronics could be enabled with small-footprint versions of the present system to facilitate prognostics and diagnostics. IAC will explore some of these exciting commercial applications in the future.