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News Release


Release No: 537-96
September 18, 1996


The new High Level Architecture (HLA) has been designated the technical architecture for all simulations in the Department of Defense.

It represents a major step in the implementation of the DoD- wide Common Technical Framework for modeling and simulation, which is being established to increase the interoperability and reuse of simulations, said Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology Paul Kaminski who recently signed the memorandum. CTF will also provide greater simulation capability and cost-effectiveness.

Advanced modeling and simulation techniques will afford the opportunity to integrate a wide mix of computer simulations, actual warfighting systems and weapon system simulators. The resultant system-of-systems will provide geographically distributed users -- warfighters, weapon systems developers, and operations analysts -- a synthetic environment with realistic interactions and results. By providing a means for simulations to be developed from modular components with well-defined functionality and interfaces, and by providing a common method for documentation of simulation entities and their interactions, the HLA gives DoD the tools necessary to facilitate interoperability among functionally different simulations, and to reuse simulation components.

The decision comes after an 18-month effort by DoD's 16- member Architecture Management Group (AMG), under the leadership of the Defense Modeling and Simulation Office (DMSO), to develop and test the Baseline Definition of the HLA for simulation. The HLA is the cornerstone of the Common Technical Framework, prescribed in the Modeling and Simulation Master Plan (DoD 5000.59-P, dated October 1995). After AMG approval in August, the HLA Baseline Definition was presented to the DoD Executive Council for Modeling and Simulation (EXCIMS), which endorsed it earlier this month.

The HLA baseline is defined by versions 1.0 of the HLA Rules, the HLA Interface Specification, and the HLA Object Model Template. The key features of the HLA were refined through an extensive prototyping process involving hundreds of participants from across the DoD modeling and simulation community. Industry provided roughly half of the participants, with the remainder coming from government, federally funded research and development centers, and academia.

Prototype Runtime Infrastructure (RTI) software was used to build and operate prototype federations using the HLA, fostering a high degree of confidence in the feasibility and utility of the various functions called for in the HLA specification. Plans are in place to continue development of this supporting software and to make it widely available to the DoD modeling and simulation community in early FY 97. In addition to the RTI, a number of other software support tools are envisioned, to include automated tools for developing required HLA object models and for testing compliance with the HLA.

The three defining documents of the HLA, along with supporting documentation and briefings, are available for viewing and downloading through the DMSO Home Page on the World Wide Web (https://www.dmso.mil/).

News media are invited to a HLA roundtable with Dr. Anita Jones, director of research and engineering, Office of the Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology, and Navy Capt. James Hollenbach, director, Defense Modeling and Simulation Office, Monday, Sept. 23, 1996, 4:30 p.m. (EDT), in room 2E776, the Pentagon.

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