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DARPA’s Industry, Academic Partners Develop Mathematical & Computational Tools for Complex System Design

TRADES tools photo from Siemens
TRADES tools, photo from Siemens

Three companies, one nonprofit organization and three universities helped the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency develop computational tools and foundational math concepts for designing complex defense or commercial systems.

Participants in DARPA's Transformative Design project began work in 2017 to align design techniques with new manufacturing technologies, such as 3D printing, to help designers manage space complexities, the agency said Jan. 15.

Siemens, Etaphase, Xerox's PARC subsidiary, University of Colorado Boulder, University of Utah, Columbia University, and the International Computer Science Institute took part in the agency-sponsored program.

“TRADES has developed new concepts that would eliminate that bottleneck and accelerate the design process to include automated synthesis, where a computer explores design alternatives across multiple physics such as thermal, mechanical, electro-optic and the like, without human intervention," said Jan Vandenbrande, program manager in DARPA's defense sciences office.

The agency expects resulting tools, algorithms and processes to help the Department of Defense increase the quality of platforms such as rocket engines and drive further conceptual design research.

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Written by Christine Thropp

oversees day-to-day content production for ExecutiveBiz, a publication under Executive Mosaic's media group covering government contracting industry news. She also writes about executive movements and commentaries, M&A activities, contract awards and technology and service offerings of medium-sized businesses and other GovCon companies. Prior to assuming her current responsibilities with EBiz, Thropp produced daily competitive intelligence briefings for the company's GovCon customers.

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