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Control allocation and transfer in complex mission operations: new paradigms for new mission challenges and capabilities  (2010)
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This presentation begins by describing the two major aspects of Control Authority allocation and transfer applicable to both future human exploration missions, and robotic missions including scientific and military earth-observing missions. These two elements are the governing policies that guide control allocation decisions, and the dynamic control allocation and transfer mechanisms that must implement control decisions in accordance with the policies.

Historically, operational control during human missions has followed a paradigm of verbal delegation between the Mission Control Center flight control personnel and the crewmembers in a vehicle. Situational realities expected in NASA’s long duration human exploration missions require a different paradigm for allocation and transfer of control, for several reasons, including: distance and latency of contact, requirement for real-time control of multiple assets, complexity of mission goals, etc.

These same issues are already affecting C3 and C4I in a variety of military situations. Military space systems frequently have complex mission goals that include observation, communication and more. Military operational systems may include space assets, aeronautic assets, ground assets, information assets, and so on, with varied and sometimes synergistic mission goals. As with NASA’s exploration systems, military systems always include people many places in the integrated system. In military systems, the potential for loss of system elements is very high, and such loss complicates the C4 situation greatly.

The new environment of Command, Control and Communications complexity cannot be mastered without a governing architecture and dynamic approach to allocation and transfer of control – an architecture and approach that take advantage of automation, and guide the human interactions with the automated systems. These issues are at the heart of human-systems integration in the execution of long duration missions, and successful military missions. Control Management as outlined in this presentation is a practice that reduces risk to mission and to crewmembers, because the main impact of effective Control Authority Management is to increase the probability that a correct decision will be made at every decision point.
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allocation, capabilities, challenges, complex, Control, mission, mission, new, new, operations, paradigms, transfer
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Proceedings of the NASA/Aerospace Corporation Space Systems Engineering and Risk Management Symposium, El Segundo, California, April 6-8, 2010
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Curator: Phil So
NASA Official: Jessica Nowinski
Last Updated: August 15, 2019