Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Systems Engineering


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Thomas C. Ford, PhD.


Military operations are dynamic in nature, as time-dependent requirements or adversary actions can contribute to differing levels of mission performance among systems. Future military operations commonly use multi-criteria decision analysis techniques that rely on value-focused thinking (VFT) to analyze and ultimately rank alternatives during the Analysis of Alternatives phase of the acquisition process. Traditional VFT approaches are not typically employed with the intention of analyzing time-variant performance of alternatives. In this research, a holistic approach towards integrating fundamental practices such as VFT, systems architecture, and modeling and simulation is used to analyze time-dependent data outputs of an alternative’s performance within an operational environment. Incorporating this approach prior to Milestone A of the acquisition process allows for the identification of time-based capability gaps and additional dynamic analysis of possible alternatives that can be implemented as a flexible means of assessment. As part of this research, the pre-acquisition methodology is implemented with a hypothetical multi-domain Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance mission in order to exemplify multiple time-dependent analysis possibilities.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number



AFIT designator shown as it appears on document and SF298.