Design Concepts for Automating Maintenance Instructions
computer program verification
air force personnel
computer aided instruction
Databases and Information Systems
Graphics and Human Computer Interfaces
This research task was performed under the Technology for Readiness and Sustainment (TRS) contract (F33615-99-D-6001) for the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Sustainment Logistics Branch (HESS) at Wright-Patterson AFB, OH. The period of performance spanned one year starting 29 January 1999. The objective of this task was to develop and demonstrate a framework that can support the automated validation and verification of aircraft maintenance Technical Orders (TOs). The research team examined all stages ofTO generation to determine which tasks most warranted further research. From that investigation, validation and verification of appropriate, safe, and correct procedure steps emerged as the primary research target. This process would be based on available computer-aided design (CAD) data, procedure step ordering from existing sources, and human models. This determination was based on which tasks could yield the greatest impact on the authoring process and offer the greatest potential economic benefits. The team then developed a research roadmap and outlined specific technologies to be addressed in possible subsequent Air Force research tasks. To focus on the potential technology integration of the validation and verification component into existing or future TO generation procedures, we defined a demonstration scenario. Using the Front Uplock Hook assembly from an F/A-18 as the subject, we examined task procedure steps and failures that could be exposed by automated validation tools. These included hazards to personnel, damage to equipment, and incorrect disassembly order. Using the Parameterized Action Representation (PAR) developed on previous projects for actions and equipment behaviors, we characterized procedure steps and their positive and negative consequences. Finally, we illustrated a hypothetical user interface extension to a typical Interactive Electronic Technical Manual (IETM) authoring system to demonstrate how this process might appear to the TO author.