Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Kenneth M. Hopkinson, PhD


This research presents a Network Tasking Order process that collects mission plans, network capabilities, and historical records to build a Network Tasking Order (NTO). The NTO document directs the form and usage of the network, much like an Air Tasking Order (ATO) directs the usage of air power. The NTO process is fleshed out with the content and format of the NTO given herein for the first time. Tools such as topology control algorithms are then shown through simulation to improve the quality of service of the network by finding favorable ways to connect the assets identified during the NTO process and to route the information through them, in one case preventing a 15% data loss. Furthermore, portions of the network can be hardened against cyber attack through a novel approach to polymorphic networking. The NTO process can provide a complete list of connections that are possible for a network. By periodically changing those connections in use and the routes taken through them, it becomes more difficult for adversaries to map the network in preparation for an attack. In the majority of cases, network availability to an attacker is reduced by more than 50%. It is also shown how existing topology control algorithms can be modified to produce heuristics for polymorphic networking.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number