Current Issue of The ITEA Journal of Test and Evaluation

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December 2017 - T&E for Enhanced Security

ITEA-Journal Dec17 Cov web

The theme for this issue is “T&E for Enhanced Security,” and the issue includes a Guest Editorial, an Inside the Beltway feature, the President’s Corner, and eight technical articles.

Our Guest Editorial, written by Steve Hutchison, Ph.D., is “Improving Operational Test and Evaluation Outcomes.” In this feature, he attacks the familiar problem of a low overall rate of favorable operational test and evaluation outcomes. In this case, he attacks the problem from a new direction. Dr. Hutchison presents a watch-list of factors affecting operational test and evaluation outcomes, and he concludes with a key suggestion to improve the rate of favorable test and evaluation outcomes. We thank Dr. Hutchison for helping us gather many of the articles for this issue.

Our Inside the Beltway article is titled, “Twelve Years of Innovation in Complex System V&V at the FAA.” Jaime Figueroa summarizes the most important issues discussed at the Federal Aviation Administration’s twelfth annual Verification and Validation Summit in 2017. Mr. Figueroa links these most important issues to the theme of the summit, “Achieving Complexity Consciousness,” and he concludes with a discussion of the similarities of the issues and the challenges being faced by the T&E community.

President’s Corner, written by William T. Keegan, our new President of the Board of Directors for ITEA, is the first of this featured article from him. This will be one of many articles where he discusses upcoming events, news about ITEA, and key themes and articles in The ITEA Journal.

Our first of eight technical articles, “Test and Evaluation Challenges for Advanced Image-Based Security Technologies,” written by Christopher Smith, Ph.D., discusses test and evaluation of increasingly complex, high-performance screening systems for both conventional and homemade explosives detection. He explains that the performance of automatic target recognition algorithms surpasses the discrimination expertise of the best human inspectors, yet presents challenges for testing.

The second technical article in this issue, “TSA Systems Integration Facility (TSIF) Test Program” written by Mike McCormick and Gregory Miller, states that the TSIF was established in 2007 to thoroughly test and evaluate products for live screening operations. They discuss the testing environment where new technologies from various vendors are tested in actual environments, including a baggage handling system in the checked baggage laboratory.

For our next article, “Risk Assessment for Specific M&S Characteristics” by James Elele, Ph.D., et al., the authors state that the focus of risk assessment is on specific characteristics of modeling and simulation (M&S) capability, accuracy, and usability. They demonstrate a method to derive quantitative and qualitative estimates of risk, and their process can be applied throughout the life of a program that is using M&S.

In our fourth technical article, “Testing and Evaluation of Passive Radiation Detection Equipment for Homeland Security,” David West, Ph.D., et al., review the different types of equipment used in these applications of passive radiation detection. The authors cover three unique challenges for this application, and they discuss a series of test and evaluation standards that help enable the test and evaluation process.

In the fifth technical article, “On Becoming a Board-Qualified Chief Development Tester,” Thomas Simms et al. discuss the qualifications and selection process for a Chief Development Tester (CDT), background of the developed requirement, role and professional development of the CDT, specific requirements and the board qualification process, and CDTs in designated Key Leadership Positions.

The sixth technical article, authored by Alejandro Hernandez, Ph.D., is titled “Guiding Construction of Better Test Designs by Modeling Random Latin Hypercube Correlation Values with the Gumbel Distribution.” The author explores ways to better use Design of Experiments for large dimensional experiments. For these large problem sets, some adjustments must be made to keep the test affordable in terms of size, assets, and time. The author proposes a selection criteria that reduces the correlations between factors and helps testers select a nearly orthogonal random Latin hypercube.

The seventh technical article, “Hybrid LDPC-Coded Free-Space Transmission Systems” by Zhen Qu, Ph.D., et al., describes a method to improve system performance for optical or radio-frequency carriers transmitting data in free space. The authors show that by optimizing the orbital angular momentum or using a rate-less LDPC-coded modulation, system performance is improved. The method shows promise in improving performance even in the presence of atmospheric turbulence.

For the last technical article for this issue, “Rethinking Design of Experiments for Developmental Test and Evaluation,” the author, George Axiotis, states that application of Design of Experiments (DOE) in developmental test and evaluation (DT&E) needs improvement, and he proposes a revised DOE process to more accurately satisfy the needs of DT&E. His proposed process is a more pragmatic approach that will lower the complexity of the DOE designs and hopefully accelerate the DT&E process.

I hope you enjoy this fourth (last) issue of 2017 for The ITEA Journal of Test and Evaluation. By the time you receive issue 38-4 in December, the March 2018 issue 39-1 is being finalized. That theme will be “Testing Using Facilities Around the World.” For the next issue (the second issue of 2018), 39-2, the deadline for submissions is just after March 1, 2018, and the theme will be “Unmanned and Autonomous Vehicle Testing (Issue 39-2, June 2018).” We have posted all themes and descriptions for the remainder of 2018 – 2021 on the ITEA website. Please provide feedback on the choice of themes, and please write early and often.


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