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New academic paper looks at systems engineering for resilience

A new paper, written by John S. Brtis and Michael A. McEvilley from MITRE Corporation introduces the subject of ‘Systems engineering for resilience’ looking at ways of addressing system resilience within systems engineering methodologies.


Resilience has become an important consideration for systems engineering (SE). This paper discusses ways of addressing system resilience within SE methodologies. This paper starts by exploring the meaning of resilience, how it applies to the engineered system, and how it relates to established SE viewpoints and activities.

The paper identifies a key distinguishing characteristic of resilience; viz., resilience requirements are an expression of the delivery of capability under adverse conditions. As such, resilience requirements include aspects of functional, performance, and environmental requirements, and do so with focus on the adverse conditions that fully define the acceptable delivery of capability. This results in resilience requirements having a unique structure of data that must be captured for them to be properly specified. That required data drives a need for resilience-specific considerations to be added to traditional SE activities; these activities start early in the system life cycle to establish the resilience needs, priorities, and constraints. This paper discusses the activities that need to be added. Once resilience has been addressed in the system requirements, architecture, and design, we find the SE practices that are normally carried out during the remainder of the SE lifecycle will handle resilience considerations without alteration.

Read the paper (PDF).

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