Skip to Main Content
As a relatively young mission area, Airspace Security offers many interesting opportunities for system engineering. Little formal documentation of the systems and operations exist, and many of the procedures and capabilities used have evolved in an expedient manner to meet urgent mission needs. The success of the mission to date is a testament to the experience and dedication of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) operational security personnel and their mission partners in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Defense (DoD), and other agencies, as well as civil National Airspace System (NAS) users. Achieving the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) vision will depend upon leveraging the current operational knowledge and capabilities, while integrating security more closely with trajectory-based operations, collaborative Air Traffic Management (ATM) and utilizing the infrastructure provided by net-centric operations and information sharing. This will be accomplished in part by applying system engineering principles and techniques to derive the NextGen system requirements. This paper will describe the system engineering processes used to begin modernization of the FAA's airspace security capabilities as documented in the NextGen Implementation Plan. The focus of this paper will be on two specific analyses: first, the Goal Directed Task Analysis (GDTA); and second, the functional analysis for the Security Integrated Tool Suite (SITS).