Modeling & Simulation

Modeling & Simulation Overview

Modeling and Simulation (M&S) is the use of models, including emulators, prototypes, simulators, and stimulators, either statically or over time, to develop data as a basis for making managerial or technical decisions. It attempts to represent real-world processes, equipment, people, activities and environments. It’s used mostly during the Technology Development (TD) Phase of the Acquisitions Process. The terms “modeling” and “simulation” are often used interchangeably but are distinct. [2]

M&S is a tool used in Systems Engineering to gather information to help make decisions.  It’s normally used in product development to help define/refine requirements and for testing or analyzing a system or process. M&S can utilize emulators, prototypes, simulators, and stimulators to develop data. It’s intended to provide an operationally valid environment to explore concepts and refine capability requirements in preparation for field experimentation. M&S tools are also used to capture current and future Joint and Service capabilities, doctrine, and tactics.

Modeling and Simulation (M&S) Uses

Typical programs use M&S to [1,4]

  • Develop the system concept
  • Design the system, including its sustainment
  • Assess the merits of alternatives throughout the development cycle
  • Integrate the system
  • Test the system to verify it meets requirements
  • Support system introduction, sustainment, and evolution

Modeling and Simulation (M&S) Definitions

Definition: Modeling is the process of producing a model (see Model Types). A model is a representation of the construction and working of some system of interest. A model is similar to but simpler than the system it represents. One purpose of a model is to enable the analyst to predict the effect of changes to the system. [3]

Definition: A Simulation of a system is the operation of a model of the system (see Simulator Types). The model can be reconfigured and experimented with which is usually impossible and too expensive to do with the actual system it represents. [3]

Modeling & Simulation Policy

DoD 5000.59 “DoD Modeling and Simulation (M&S) Management”, establishes M&S policy including ensuring that M&S investments promote the enhancements of DoD M&S technologies in support of operational needs and the acquisition process; develop common tools, methodologies, and databases; and establish standards and protocols promoting the internet, data exchange, open system architecture, and software reusability of M&S applications. This policy also establishes and defined the roles of the DoD M&S Coordination Office (MSCO). [1]

Topics that Program Managers (PM) and program personnel should be aware of about M&S include:


AcqLinks and References:

Updated: 8/1/2021

Rank: G5.3

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