Keywords: system of systems engineering, SoSE requirements, system functions, operational mission threads, operational concepts, mission–area tasks
Defining SoS requirements: an early glimpse at a methodology
This paper examines the nature of the issues in defining SoS requirements and examines an emerging methodology for deriving SoS requirements. The methodology focuses on SoS characteristics common to most SoS regardless of their composition of constituent systems, and proposes a combined top–down, bottoms–up approach to deriving unifying SoS requirements. The top–down analysis considers the SoS' high–level capability objectives, which can be derived from top–level characterisations of the SoS (e.g., operational mission threads, operational concepts, mission–area tasks). This derived set of capability objectives is then decomposed into functional themes, which are then tempered by a bottom–up validation by aggregating common system functions across the constituent system elements within the SoS. The resulting SoS requirements are more granular than capability objectives yet more abstract than the detailed system requirements. This paper concludes with the current implications and future challenges the methodology poses for SoS–based initiatives and the requirements engineering field.