Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

David R. Jacques, PhD


The problem being addressed is how to best find and engage an unknown number of targets in unknown locations using multiple autonomous wide area search munitions. In this research cooperative behavior is being investigated to improve the overall mission effectiveness. A simulation was used to emulate the behavior of autonomous wide area search munitions and measure their overall expected performance. This code was modified to incorporate the capability for cooperative engagement based on a parameterized decision rule. Using Design of Experiments and Response Surface Methodologies, the simulation was run to achieve optimal decision rule parameters for given scenarios and to determine the sensitivities of those parameters to the precision of the Autonomous Target Recognition algorithm, lethality of the warhead, and the characteristics of the battlefield. Results show that the form of cooperative engagement used in this study is most useful in overcoming the limitations on warhead lethality and, to a lesser degree, probability of target report. However, cooperative engagement alone is not able to compensate for higher false target attack rates. Also, the selection of the optimal weights in the decision algorithm are very sensitive to all battlefield characteristics.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number