Journal Publication on Run-Time Assurance for Autonomous Aerospace Systems

A paper capping several years of research into run-time assurance (RTA) for autonomous unmanned aircraft appeared in the December issue of the Journal of Guidance, Control, and Dynamics. It was co-authored by Michael DeVore and Nathan Richards of Barron Associates, together with John Schierman of AFRL and Matthew Clark of Galois, Inc. RTA systems hold the promise of protecting feedback systems that contain advanced or experimental elements that cannot be completely tested at design time to their required levels of assurance. This work investigated RTA frameworks for aircraft with multilevel interacting feedback systems, from low-level inner-loop control through high-level fleet-management and mission-planning components. It details techniques for coordinating the interactions of RTA components operating at each of these feedback levels.