As Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Traffic Management (UTM) ecosystems move from technology demonstrations to operationalization, aggregate-level system robustness needs to be addressed. System robustness and resiliency to failure are essential elements of any safety-critical system, which to date, have not been adequately explored or fleshed out within the context of UTM. While it is anticipated that airworthiness standards will be developed for UAs themselves, it does not appear that enough research is being performed regarding the impact of individual component and service faults or failures on the reliability of the UTM ecosystem.
CAL Analytics has teamed with Assured Information Security to accomplish the following Phase 1 research:
-Analyze current UTM system design for brittle areas
-Identify the impact to UTM system safety created by identified brittle areas to aid in prioritization of research areas for enabling In-Time System-wide Safety Assurance (ISSA)
-Develop techniques for testing UTM system robustness
-Propose new Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) for relaying State, Status, Mode, Version, and Fault information
-Develop scalable health and integrity monitoring techniques for UTM ecosystems
-Develop cybersecurity monitoring techniques for distributed cyber-physical UTM systems
-Develop scalable fault tolerance techniques for UTM architectures and components
-Develop graceful degradation techniques for UTM ecosystems
The results of this research will form the basis for a UTM health and integrity monitoring system that will:
-Monitor and detect UTM ecosystem faults
-Automate contingency management to tolerate or recover from faults for higher system uptime
-Automate a root cause analysis to pinpoint fault sources for faster mean time between repair
These capabilities will ultimately be integral to address safety and advance the UTM industry. A robust UTM system will form the building blocks for future Urban Air Mobility (UAM) research.
Health and integrity monitoring of a UTM ecosystem will help NASA research as UTM is transitioned from a research project to productization and commercialization. As NASA shifts gears to UAM, a safe, reliable and robust UTM framework must exist. Hooking our technology into the LVC-DE system will allow NASA to simulate and test the reaction to many more edge-case and off-nominal scenarios. This research will also assist with standards development through RTCA and ASTM, by standardizing interfaces and reactions to common off-nominal scenarios.
Applications include commercialized UTM ecosystems where maintenance and operations may be controlled by a public or private entity, such as a DOT or large company (e.g. Amazon). Our initial customers will include the NY UAS Test Site and the Ohio DOT. Additional applications include any system of systems where safety, uptime, autonomy and scalability are a factor, including onboard UAs.