This course addresses in detail the systems engineer's responsibilities and activities during the conceptual phases of a system development program. Systems engineering tools commonly employed at this stage of a program are presented along with selected problems that illustrate both the applicability and limitations of commonly employed tools and procedures. The course steps through conceptual design beginning with analysis of needs and objectives and proceeding to the exploration of alternative concepts and the selection of a concept that best meets goals of performance, timeliness, and affordability. Topics include definition of operational scenarios, functional analysis, risk assessment, system tradeoffs, measures of effectiveness, and requirements formulation. Emphasis is on the application of these systems engineering techniques in a team environment to a class project. Students apply systems engineering methods learned from reading and lectures to the development of a realistic system in an ongoing project in a team format.
645.462 Introduction to Systems Engineering and 645.467 Management of Systems Projects, or permission of the student's advisor and the course instructor.