A FEASIBILITY STUDY USING SCENARIO METHODOLOGIES ON FUTURE UNMANNED AERIAL SYSTEM CAPABILITIES
Hatch, William D., II
Hernandez, Alejandro S.
Parker, Gary W.
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This thesis demonstrates the feasibility of using computer-aided wargames (CAW) as a tool to help determine high-level system requirements for future reconnaissance-capable unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). This research uses a model-based systems engineering (MBSE) approach to establish high-level capability requirements and concepts of operations for the future fleet. Unmanned aerial vehicle design factors in this study include mission altitude, sortie size, and time between launches. Measures of effectiveness (MOEs) delineate which of these factors, or factor combinations, best enhances enemy high-value unit (HVU) detection while minimizing UAV losses in theater. The thesis utilizes Joint Theater Level Simulator-Global Operations (JTLS-GO) as the modeling environment and applies regression tools and visualization techniques to communicate model outcomes. While all three design factors affect the MOEs, results from the model suggest that UAV altitude has the most prominent impact on the MOEs. High altitudes decrease HVU detections but also lower UAV attrition, illustrating potential trade-offs that can be applied to an operational context. The interaction of the number of UAVs with this altitude points to a concept of operations. Swarms of low-altitude UAVs tend to have greater success with detecting HVUs while keeping a relatively low percentage of losses.
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