Systems Engineering Through the System Life Cycle Essay

Systems Engineering Through the System Life Cycle Essay

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Modern engineered systems come into being in response to societal needs or because of new opportunities offered by advancing technology, or both. The evolution of a particular new system from the time when a need for it is recognized and a feasible technical approach is identified, through its development and introduction into operational use, is a complex effort, which will be referred to as the system development process. This chapter is devoted to describing the basic system development process and how systems engineering is applied at each step of this process.
A typical major system development exhibits the following characteristics:
• It is a complex effort.
• It meets an important user need.
• It usually requires several years to complete.
• It is made up of many interrelated tasks.
• It involves several different disciplines.
• It is usually performed by several organizations.
• It has a specific schedule and budget.
The development and introduction into the use of a complex system inherently requires increasingly large commitments of resources as it progresses from concept through engineering, production, and operational use. Further, the introduction of new technology inevitably involves risks, which must be identified and resolved as early as possible. These factors require that the system development be conducted in a step - by -step manner, in which the success of each step is demonstrated, and the basis for the next one validated, before a decision is made to proceed to the next step.

The term “ system life cycle ” is commonly used to refer to the stepwise evolution of a new system from concept through development an...

... middle of paper ... for the operational phase includes provision of a logistic support system and training programs for operators and maintenance personnel. This planning should have major participation from systems engineering. There are always unanticipated problems that arise after the system becomes operational that must be recognized and included in the logistic and training systems. Very often, the instrumentation required for training and maintenance is itself a major component of the system to be delivered.

Formal review at the end of each phase allows maximum management control. This approach creates considerable system documentation. Formal documentation ensures that system requirements can be traced back to stated business needs. It produces many intermediate products that can be reviewed to see whether they meet the user’s needs and conforms to standards.

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