AFRL/RY - Modeling and Simulation


Leverage commercial video game technology to support the Air Force mission across all domains. COMPASE Model and Simulation Logo


Leverage gaming technology to support campaign and mission level sensor performance analysis in conjunction with traditional M&S tools.


Modeling and Simulation can be viewed as either a disjointed collection of tools and techniques or as a coherent set of techniques with unique problem domains, establishing it as a discipline on its own accord. These techniques are generally developed by experts in the fields of mathematics, systems engineering, and computer science. Practitioners in various disciplines use these techniques to conduct research in application areas such as defense, physics, business, medicine, and engineering. In the DoD, these tools and techniques are often used to aid in prediction when empirical means are not available or prohibitively expensive. In all cases, M&S is used to achieve a particular goal and the focus is generally not on developing new M&S theories. On the other hand, M&S is also becoming its own discipline with unique problems such as interoperability and composability.

Layered Sensing Operation Center

Layered Sensing is characterized by the appropriate combination of sensors and platforms (including those for persistent sensing), infrastructure, and exploitation capabilities to enable this synergistic awareness. To achieve the Layered Sensing vision, AFRL is pursuing a Modeling & Simulation (M&S) strategy through the Layered Sensing Operations Center (LSOC). An experimental ISR systemof- systems test-bed, the LSOC integrates DoD standard simulation tools with commercial, off-the-shelf video game technology for rapid scenario development and visualization. These tools will help facilitate sensor management performance characterization, system development, and operator behavioral analysis.

LSOC Goals  
  • Quantify the benefits of Layered Sensing
  • Provide a simulation environment for Layered Sensing architectural trade studies
  • Develop a framework to effectively model and compare Layered Sensing components
  • Discover Layered Sensing technology gaps through virtual scenarios and simulations
Gaming Lab Analysis 

Gaming Lab LogoIn order to aid in the planning and programming of future research, the Gaming Lab utilizes both constructive simulations with traditional models and virtual simulations with operator perspectives for a comprehensive analysis of the Layered Sensing construct. Metrics development and architecture analysis is another M&S analysis thread. The Gaming Lab is leveraging academic research from the Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT) in defining metrics for both real-time and post processing analysis. Measures of Effectiveness (MOE) and Measures of Performance (MOP) are being developed and validated in comparing architecture attributes such as control hierarchies, data flow, exploitation centers, and dissemination paths. Future ISR data collection centers and associative visualization metrics for realtime analysis are being explored through cooperative experiments with Ohio State University (OSU). These experiments will become the "first pass" in evaluating ISR operator interfaces and teaming efficiencies.

Gaming lab charts

Foundational Game Research

The Gaming Lab is focused on leveraging commercially available gaming technology to advance the state of the art. It is imperative that the Gaming Lab continuously looks at the advancements in the gaming industry to keep up with its fast pace. This foundational game research is a major thrust within the gaming lab and impacts the direction and analysis of all the Gaming Lab's efforts. This foundational research is twofold; keeping up with the state of the art in gaming and developing AFRL specific technologies to leverage these advancements.

Commercial gaming technology is a shift from traditional DoD modeling and simulation. The Gaming Lab focuses on market-moving products while avoiding boxed solutions that have a tendency to stagnate or become less relevant over time. Gaming technology affords the greatest visual fidelity for modeling and simulation. In the Sensors Directorate, fidelity matters. This fidelity allows the Gaming Lab to perform analysis on systems designed for use in dynamic, complex worlds such as urban environments.

Gaming lab tank shooting image