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System Architecting with SysML

Model-Based Systems Engineering Using An Effective Modeling Language

The discipline of systems engineering (SE) is transforming, with much of the design information now captured in graphical models. System Modeling Language (SysML) is the primary tool used to create and retain this design information. Design information in SysML includes operational (stakeholder) definition, technical requirements, architectural analysis/structure, parametric definition, and test information, which together represent nearly the entirety of SE artifacts. An underlying database holds the SysML information so that data from one diagram appears synchronized on other diagrams. The benefits to the system architect are extensive.

This course shows how to architect and maintain a system definition using SysML. The course is filled with graphic examples from SysML models, but it is unlike other SysML courses in that the spotlight is on the system architecting. Students do not work on a computer during class, so that they can focus on the concepts rather than on use of a specific software tool. The course flows through familiar SE processes while teaching how the SysML models and structures support and enhance each task. We cover every SE activity and every SysML diagram, from Use Case and Activity diagrams to define operations; through State Machine, Sequence and Parametric diagrams to define system requirements; to Block Definition, Internal Block, and Requirements diagrams to define architectural structure. By the completion of this course, you will be able to apply SysML effectively in your own work.

In addition to our complete course materials, students also receive a copy of the seminal textbook A Practical Guide to SysML by Friedenthal, Moore, and Steiner.

Register here to receive more information on our courses.

Attend this course if you are:

  • Designing or redesigning large systems and need better technical control.
  • Transitioning from software engineering to systems engineering.
  • Improving your systems engineering skill set.
  • Working as part of a model-based systems engineering effort.

The course is aimed at

  • Systems engineers
  • Design engineers
  • Technical team leaders
  • System support leaders
  • Others who participate in defining and developing complex systems.

Fairfax, VA - 6-8 Nov 17

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The Architecting Challenge takes the model-based design of a remotely piloted aircraft from concept through system design using SysML. Student groups work through the challenge in four parts to envision a drone aircraft useful for major event monitoring and control. In Part A, students define use cases and activities. In Part B, they define states, sequences, and parameters. In Part C, groups create alternative architectural concepts using block diagrams. Finally in Part D, they fill in the model with requirements allocation and model structure.

Course Topics

Systems Architecting and Engineering (1:30) – How systems architecting and systems engineering fit together; how model-based systems engineering (MBSE) has developed and what benefits it offers. A systems engineering model based on ISO-15288 and the INCOSE Handbook. What is an architecture? What is architecting? Six principles of MBSE. Survey of current SysML tools

Basic SysML Concepts (1:30) – Where SysML came from; its purpose within the SE paradigms; the basic constructs of SysML. SysML underlying concepts; the information database; correct vs. complete. The SysML language. SysML and UML. The nine SysML diagram types. Common diagram structures: frames, headers, keywords, node symbols, path symbols, icons, notes.

Operational Definition and Analysis (3:00) – Understanding stakeholder views of the problem and the system; stakeholder requirements; using SysML to analyze and document the operational architecture. The concept of a use case (scenario). System boundaries and external actors. Use Case diagrams to define functionality. Activity diagrams to elaborate the behavior of a use case

System Requirements Modeling (2:00) – Modeling technical requirements; the relationships between operations and requirements; how to document requirements and their relationships using SysML. Requirements, their forms and uses. Requirements diagrams to show relationships among requirements. Types of requirement relationships and how to show them in SysML. Requirements rationale in SysML. Constraints as a part of requirements; the constraint block. Parametric diagrams to define constraints. Constraint blocks to modify flows. Representing trade-offs. Modeling requirements verification.

System Logical Architecting and Analysis (3:00) – Requirements analysis using logical constructs; understanding the requirements better as a step toward physical system design; the logical architecture. Logical vs. physical architecture. Functional design vs. object-oriented design; how SysML supports either. The concept of a state; state transitions, triggers, guards, and effects. State hierarchies and operation calls. State Machine diagrams to analyze and document the event-based behaviors. Sequence diagrams to analyze and document the message-passing behaviors. Lifelines and interactions in sequences

System Physical Architecting (3:00) – System physical design; how to use SysML to show the physical architecture; the end-state of architecting. The block as a representation of systems, components, or flow items. Block relationship types: association, composite, reference, generalization. Block Definition diagrams to depict structural block relationships. Internal Block diagrams to depict dynamic block relationships. Quantifiable characteristics in a block. Modeling interfaces using ports and flows. Modeling block behavior. Modeling classifications and variants. Requirements diagrams to show hierarchical requirements allocations. Requirements allocations in the block diagrams

Additional SysML Constructs (1:30) – Some remaining features of SysML for better architecting; organizing the model; allocating relationships. Package diagrams to organize the model; types of organization; namespaces; imports and dependencies. Requirements containment hierarchies. Allocation between model constructs. Alternate constructs in SysML. Customizing SysML for projects or enterprises; SysML profiles; stereotypes

Architecting Challenge Exercise (5:00) – Student group work in four segments to practice the major aspects of architecting with SysML; creating the SysML model diagrams to define a system. Introduction to the remotely-piloted aircraft system. Part A: Operational definition with use cases and activities. Part B: Logical architecting with state machines, sequences, and parameters. Part C: Physical architecting and alternatives with block diagrams. Part D: Requirements allocation and package diagrams.

Summary (0:30) - Review of the important points of the course. Interactive discussion of participant experiences that add to the material.

Continuing Education: This course qualifies for 2.1 CEUs or 21 PDUs

Qualified Instructors for this course

Dr. Eric Honour, CSEP, INCOSE Fellow, and former INCOSE President, has been in international leadership of the engineering of systems for over 20 years, part of a 40+ year career of complex systems development and operation. His energetic and informative presentation style actively involves class participants. He was the founding Chair of the INCOSE Technical Board in 1994, and served as Director of the Systems Engineering Center of Excellence (SECOE). He was selected in 2000 for Who’s Who in Science and Technology and in 2004 as an INCOSE Founder. He is on the editorial board for Systems Engineering. He has been a successful entrepreneur, systems engineer, engineering manager, and program manager at Harris Information Systems, E-Systems Melpar, and Singer Link, preceded by nine years as a US Naval Officer flying P-3 aircraft. He has led or contributed to the development of 17 major systems.. Dr. Honour has a BSSE (Systems Engineering) from the US Naval Academy, MSEE from the Naval Postgraduate School, and PhD from the University of South Australia based on his ground-breaking work to quantify the value of systems engineering. Dr. Scott Workinger has led innovative technology development efforts in complex, risk-laden environments for 30 years in the fields of manufacturing (automotive, glass, optical fiber), engineering and construction (nuclear, pulp & paper), and information technology (expert systems, operations analysis, CAD, collaboration technology). He currently teaches courses on program management and engineering and consults on strategic management and technology issues. Scott has a B.S in Engineering Physics from Lehigh University, an M.S. in Systems Engineering from the University of Arizona, and a Ph.D. in Civil and Environment Engineering from Stanford University.
John Pratchios has over 40 years experience as a systems engineer designing, implementing and supporting complex hardware/software systems development. His work has included design and implementation of military command, communications, surveillance, and information systems, and also systems for weather imagery, publications control, and locomotive/train control. He is an engaging instructor with a warm, informal, knowledgeable presentation style. He has presented courses to military, Department of Energy, contractor, and college organizations. He is an expert in classical systems engineering including requirements management, system design, production liaison, hardware/software integration, program management, risk mitigation, and technical leadership. He is a specialist in architectural development of both centralized and distributed systems including DODAF and other types of analysis and model development for entire system performance/throughput estimation and validation. His experience includes Object Oriented software analysis & design using UML, Booch, Ellis RTOOSA, and other OOA/OOD methodologies. Working at Harris Corporation, E-Systems, and for the Navy, John has led or contributed to the development of over a dozen major systems including the Multi-Threat Emitter System (MUTES), the Transformational Satellite Management Operations System (TMOS), locomotive radio remote control systems, and the highest capacity and throughput system ever fielded by Harris Publishing Systems. John has a BSEE from the US Naval Academy, MSEE from the Naval Postgraduate School, and further post-graduate work.  

Page last modified 5 Sep 17