A REVIEW OF THE NEXT GENERATION
AIR TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM
Implications and Importance of
David E. Liddle and Lynette I. Millett, Editors
Committee to Review the Enterprise Architecture, Software Development
Approach, and Safety and Human Factor Design of the Next Generation
Air Transportation System
Computer Science and Telecommunications Board
Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences
NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES
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NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance.
This project was supported by the Federal Aviation Administration under award number DTFAWA-12-A-80013. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the organizations or agencies that provided support for this project.
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Other Reports of the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board
Bulk Collection of Signals Intelligence: Technical Options, 2015
Future Directions for NSF Advanced Computing Infrastructure to Support U.S. Science and Engineering in 2017-2020: An Interim Report, 2014
At the Nexus of Cybersecurity and Public Policy: Some Basic Concepts and Issues, 2014
Emerging and Readily Available Technologies and National Security: A Framework for Addressing Ethical, Legal, and Societal Issues, 2014
Geotargeted Alerts and Warnings: Report of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps, 2013
Professionalizing the Nation’s Cybersecurity Workforce? Criteria for Future Decision-Making, 2013
Public Response to Alerts and Warnings Using Social Media: Summary of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps, 2013
Continuing Innovation in Information Technology, 2012
Computing Research for Sustainability, 2012
The Safety Challenge and Promise of Automotive Electronics: Insights from Unintended Acceleration, 2012 (with the Board on Energy and Environmental Systems and the Transportation Research Board)
Strategies and Priorities for Information Technology at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 2011
The Future of Computing Performance: Game Over or Next Level?, 2011
Wireless Technology Prospects and Policy Options, 2011
Public Response to Alerts and Warnings on Mobile Devices: Summary of a Workshop on Current Knowledge and Research Gaps, 2011
Critical Code: Software Producibility for Defense, 2010
Proceedings of a Workshop on Deterring Cyberattacks: Informing Strategies and Developing Options for U.S. Policy, 2010
Achieving Effective Acquisition of Information Technology in the Department of Defense, 2010
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COMMITTEE TO REVIEW THE ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE,
SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT APPROACH, AND SAFETY AND
HUMAN FACTOR DESIGN OF THE
NEXT GENERATION AIR TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM
DAVID E. LIDDLE, U.S. Venture Partners, Chair
STEVEN M. BELLOVIN, Columbia University
JOHN-PAUL B. CLARKE, Georgia Institute of Technology
GEORGE L. DONOHUE, George Mason University
R. JOHN HANSMAN, JR., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MATS P.E. HEIMDAHL, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
JOHN C. KNIGHT, University of Virginia
LEON J. OSTERWEIL, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
WALKER E. ROYCE, International Business Machines Corporation
GAVRIEL SALVENDY, Purdue University
THOMAS B. SHERIDAN, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
ROBERT F. SPROULL, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
JAMES W. STURGES, Independent Consultant, Greer, South Carolina
ELAINE WEYUKER, Independent Consultant, Metuchen, New Jersey
LYNETTE I. MILLETT, Associate Director and Senior Program Officer, Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB)
VIRGINIA BACON TALATI, Program Officer, CSTB
DWAYNE DAY, Senior Program Officer, Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board
JON EISENBERG, Director, CSTB
ERIC WHITAKER, Senior Program Assistant (until March 2015)
COMPUTER SCIENCE AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS BOARD
ROBERT F. SPROULL, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Chair
LUIZ ANDRE BARROSO, Google, Inc.
ROBERT F. BRAMMER, Brammer Technology, LLC
EDWARD FRANK, Apple, Inc.
SEYMOUR E. GOODMAN, Georgia Institute of Technology
LAURA HAAS, IBM Corporation
MARK HOROWITZ, Stanford University
FARNAM JAHANIAN, Carnegie Mellon University
MICHAEL KEARNS, University of Pennsylvania
ROBERT KRAUT, Carnegie Mellon University
SUSAN LANDAU, Google, Inc.
PETER LEE, Microsoft Corporation
DAVID E. LIDDLE, US Venture Partners
BARBARA LISKOV, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
FRED B. SCHNEIDER, Cornell University
JOHN STANKOVIC, University of Virginia
JOHN A. SWAINSON, Dell, Inc.
PETER SZOLOVITS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
ERNEST J. WILSON, University of Southern California
KATHERINE YELICK, University of California, Berkeley
JON EISENBERG, Director
LYNETTE I. MILLETT, Associate Director and Senior Program Officer
VIRGINIA BACON TALATI, Program Officer
SHENAE BRADLEY, Senior Program Assistant
EMILY GRUMBLING, Program Officer
RENEE HAWKINS, Financial and Administrative Manager
HERBERT S. LIN, Chief Scientist, Emeritus
For more information on CSTB,
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The Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) is an effort begun in 2003 whose goals include improving the capacity, efficiency, and safety of the U.S. air transportation system and also enabling reduction in noise, pollution, and energy use. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and various stakeholders, including equipment providers, airlines, and contractors, are currently implementing both near- and midterm capabilities of this effort.
Section 212 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, Public Law 112-95 (Box 1.1) called for an examination of NextGen’s enterprise architecture and related issues by the National Research Council (NRC). The project that was a result of this call was funded by the FAA. The Committee to Review the Enterprise Architecture, Software Development Approach, and Safety and Human Factor Design of the Next Generation Air Transportation System was formed under the auspices of the NRC’s Computer Science and Telecommunications Board in collaboration with the Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board in 2012 to conduct the study. The statement of task for the study committee can be found in Box 1.2.
The committee released a brief interim report in 2014,1 providing a discussion around the challenges of system architecture for software-intensive systems.
1 National Research Council, Interim Report of a Review of the Next Generation Air Transportation System Enterprise Architecture, Software, Safety, and Human Factors, The National Academies Press, Washington, D.C., 2014.
For its final report, the committee received a number of briefings on NextGen efforts, particularly as related to the study’s focus on enterprise architecture, software development approach, and safety and human factors. A list of briefers at committee meetings can be found in Appendix B. Subsets of the committee also conducted several informal site visits to gain insight on the system development process and FAA’s technical research. A subset of the committee visited the FAA’s William J. Hughes Technical Center in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and heard briefings on human factors research, test and evaluation processes, and cybersecurity considerations. Several members of the committee also met with experts at Lockheed Martin and Raytheon to learn generally about contractors’ software development practices and to better understand FAA’s approach to and expectations regarding system integration. Additionally, during the committee’s work, MITRE was completing an independent assessment of NextGen at the request of the FAA and provided an overview of its work and process to the committee. The committee appreciates the insights of the individuals at these organizations who participated in those meetings and especially thanks Andy Anderegg, MITRE; Fran Hill, Lockheed Martin; Charles Keegan, Raytheon; and Kaye Jackson, FAA, for helping to facilitate those visits.
As discussed in this report, there have been a number of definitional and terminological challenges encountered in the course of this study. The committee addresses a number of issues, such as a fluid definition of the NextGen project, the comingling of normal modernization efforts with more transformational developments, and an administrative rather than technical architectural standard. Those issues at times temporarily masked deep and critical issues with which the committee had to grapple to reach meaningful findings and recommendations. We are indebted to the staff of the Next Generation Program Office and their FAA colleagues for their patient efforts on behalf of the study committee in striving to clarify these issues.
David E. Liddle, Chair
Committee to Review the Enterprise Architecture, Software Development Approach, and Safety and Human Factor Design of the Next Generation Air Transportation System
Acknowledgment of Reviewers
This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Research Council’s Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report:
ELLA ATKINS, University of Michigan,
ARNOLD BARNETT, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
RICHARD BERMAN, LICAS,
KARL HEDRICK, University of California, Berkeley,
RICHARD HILLIARD, Independent Consultant,
BUTLER LAMPSON, Microsoft Research,
JOHN LAUBER, Airbus, SAS (retired),
STEVEN LIPNER, Microsoft Corporation (retired),
BARBARA LISKOV, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
MARK MAIER, Aerospace Corporation,
WILLIAM SCHERLIS, Carnegie Mellon University,
AGAM SINHA, ANS Aviation International,
RAYMOND VALEIKA, Delta Airlines, Inc., and
STEVE WINTER, Raytheon.
Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the conclusions or recommendations, nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by Ali Mosleh, University of California, Los Angeles. Appointed by the National Research Council, he was responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution.