The theme for this issue is “Testing Using Facilities Around the World,” and the issue includes two Guest Editorials, an Inside the Beltway feature, the President’s Corner, and five technical articles.
Our first Guest Editorial, written by Keith Joiner, PhD, is “International Test and Evaluation (T&E): Looking Towards the United States Not Outward from the United States.” This feature provides a unique description of international T&E looking from a perspective external to the United States. The author also provides information on the areas where Australia has parts to play in international T&E. He foresees the need for allies of the United States to find ways to resynchronize T&E capabilities with the United States.
Our second Guest Editorial, written by Fred Moorefield, is “Modernizing DoD’s Spectrum Technology Test and Evaluation Capabilities to Meet Growing Military Requirements.” In this feature, he states that achieving electromagnetic spectrum (EMS) superiority provides important tactical, operational, and strategic advantages. This goal of EMS superiority will be paramount in future military operations. He concludes that new EMS technology development will require new T&E capabilities to understand impacts and interoperability capabilities in the electromagnetic environment.
Our Inside the Beltway article is titled “Reciprocally Using International Test Facilities Under the Director, Operational Test and Evaluation (DOT&E) Test and Evaluation Program (TEP).” Gloria Deane and Mitchell Dossett state the two fundamental considerations of the TEP: that adequate testing is necessary to ensure that systems work as expected for warfighters and that T&E cooperation with allies improves interoperability in coalition operations. The authors explain the unique TEP Reciprocal Use of Test Facilities project agreement, and they state that TEP agreements have contributed to improved interoperability in the coalition warfare.
President’s Corner, written by William Keegan, President of the Board of Directors for ITEA, discusses upcoming events, news about ITEA, and key themes, features, and articles in The Journal.
Our first of five technical articles, “National Advanced Spectrum and Communications Test Network (NASCTN): A Framework for Leveraging T&E Facilities,” written by Keith Hartley, et al., discusses the need for a collaborative and flexible spectrum-sharing network. This network is needed because the growth of broadband wireless services continues worldwide, and the crowded spectrum environment drives regulators to look increasingly at spectrum sharing. The authors explain that NASCTN was designed and chartered as a cooperative agreement to quickly unite expertise, equipment, facilities, and resources to support spectrum-sharing test measurements. Expanding wireless services across government and commercial users will require increased spectrum access and technologies, and NASCTN is a model for expansion and replication to meet future needs.
The second technical article in this issue, “Next Generation Intelligent Test Network Environments” written by J. Michael Barton, Ph.D., and Venkat Dasari, Ph.D., describes many developments that are leading to a seemingly overwhelming flood of data to be evaluated for tests. For instance, the growth of networked systems of systems, an array of advanced instrumentation providing data at enormous aggregate rates, and testers needing near-real-time feedback about the state of tests as they occur, in combination, may require intelligent test networks to manage the bandwidth and sequence the computations to smart instrumentation. The authors state that current technologies are available to field intelligent instrumentation and programmable networks to process the growing flow of data from tests.
For our next article, “Estimating the Effect of Avionics Complexity on Safety Assurance” by Sarah Sheard, et al., the authors review the research to date from the Federal Aviation Administration’s Complexity and Safety Project. They state that, even with the problems associated with complexity, we must find ways to regain the ability to predict and control systems. The team created and tested a formula for complexity that can be applied early in system development, and they applied the formula to three varied test cases.
Our fourth technical article, “Services-Based Testing of Autonomy (SBTA),” is a peer-reviewed article, and Christopher Eaton, et al. suggest a method to test newly incorporated services, enabling a consistent test and evaluation (T&E) verification and validation (V&V) capability, designated TEVV. The authors state that the Services-Based Testing of Autonomy will provide a costeffective, scalable, and efficient means to test autonomy services, and TEVV will be a key asset as autonomous systems have significant mission growth.
In the fifth and last technical article, “Measuring the Influences of Mission Command,” Robert Pokorny, et al., discuss a means of developing metrics for mission command so that the United States Army can measure the effects of new systems or processes on mission command. This research leveraged a scoring system called Performance Assessment in Complex Environments (PACE) that has been successfully used on other projects in varied domains. Since the effectiveness of mission command enables mission execution, the developed metrics may be used to evaluate the effectiveness of new technology and may also reduce the operational risk of introduction of new, disruptive processes or technologies. Software that can unobtrusively measure mission command effectiveness could provide a key missing metric in operational mission testing.
I hope you enjoy this first issue of 2018 for The ITEA Journal of Test and Evaluation. By the time you receive issue 39-1 in March, the June 2018 issue 39-2 is being finalized. That theme will be “Unmanned and Autonomous Vehicle Testing.” For the next issue (the third issue of 2018), 39-3, the deadline for submissions is just after June 1, 2018, and the theme will be “Test and Evaluation of Hypersonic Systems.” We have posted all themes and descriptions for the remainder of 2018 – 2021 on the ITEA website. Please provide feedback on the choice of themes, and please write early and often.