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System engineers must also rely on
contributions from the specialty engineering disciplines,
in addition to the traditional design disciplines, for
functional expertise and specialized analytic methods.
These specialty engineering areas typically include
reliability, maintainability, logistics, test, production,
transportation, human factors, quality assurance, and
safety engineering. Specialty engineers contribute
throughout the systems engineering process; part of the
system engineer's job is to see that these functions are
coherently integrated into the project at the right times
and that they address the relevant issues. One of the
objectives for Chapter 6 is to develop an understanding
of how these specialty engineers contribute to the
objective of systems engineering.
In both systems analysis and systems
engineering, the amounts and kinds of resources to be
made available for the creation of the system are
assumed to be among the NASA Systems Engineering Handbook
Fundamentals of Systems Engineering
decisions to be made. Systems engineering
concentrates on the creation of hardware and software
architectures and on the development and management
of the interfaces between subsystems, while relying on
systems analysis to construct the mathematical models
and analyze the data to evaluate alternative designs and
to perform the actual design trade studies. Systems
analysis often requires the use of tools from operations
research, economics, or other decision sciences, and
systems analysis curricula generally include extensive
study of such topics as probability, statistics, decision
theory, queueing theory, game theory, linear and
non-linear programming, and so on. In practice, many
system engineers' academic background is richer in the
engineering disciplines than in the decision sciences. As
a consequence, the system engineer is often a
consumer of systems analysis products, rather than a
producer of them. One of the major objectives for
Chapter 5 is to develop an understanding and
appreciation of the state of that art.
Operations research and operations engineering
confine their attention to systems whose components...
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