Systems Engineering Principles Applied to Basic Research and Development
Anderson, Norman C.
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Systems engineering principles and processes have grown out of the need to effectively manage complex programs, many of them for the acquisition of operational military systems. These multi-billion dollar programs truly benefit from the application of structured systems engineering principles, and the supporting processes have been finetuned to maximize their benefit in a requirements driven environment. Research and development efforts, on the other-hand, have typically avoided application of structured processes, primarily due to a perception that such structure inhibits the creative processes that are so crucial to the discovery and development of new technologies. This paper proposes that systems engineering principles and creative discovery are not mutually exclusive environments, and that, in fact, appropriately tailored systems engineering processes can enable and enhance scientific discovery. An example of this concept will be presented for the principles of risk management, including application to basic research, applied research and development, and technology demonstrations.