Modeling and Simulation What? Why? Uses Taxonomy Model Development Life Cycle

Modeling and Simulation

model (usually miniature) is a representation of the construction and working of some system of interest It is similar to but simpler than the system it represents A good model is a tradeoff between realism and simplicity.

Modeling and Simulation

is description of observed behavior, simplified by ignoring certain details. Models allow complex systems to be understood and their behavior predicted within the scope of the model, but may give incorrect descriptions and predictions for situations outside the realism of their intended use.

Modeling and Simulation
simulation is a tool to evaluate the performance

of a system , existing or proposed, under different configurations of interest and over long periods of real time. Simulation of a system is the operation of a model of the system. The operation of the model can be studied, and hence, properties concerning the behavior of the actual system or its subsystems can be inferred.

Why Simulate?
It may be too difficult, dangerous, or expensive to observe

a real, operational system Parts of the system may not be observable (e.g., internals of a silicon chip or biological system) Uses of simulations • Analyze systems before they are built
 Reduce number of design mistakes Optimize design Analyze operational capabilities of systems Create virtual environments for training, entertainment

Applications: System Analysis
“Classical” application of simulation Telecommunication networks Transportation systems Electronic systems (e.g., microelectronics, computer systems) Battlefield simulations Manufacturing systems Logistics


Virtual Environments
Uses: training (e.g., military, medicine,

emergency planning), entertainment Simulations are often used in virtual environments to create dynamic computer generated entities
Adversaries and helpers in video games Defense: Computer generated forces (CGF)

Automated forces  Semi‐automated forces

Virtual Environments
Physical phenomena

Trajectory of projectiles  Buildings “blowing up”  Environmental effects on environment (e.g., rain washing out terrain)


Simulation Fundamentals
A computer simulation is a computer program

that models the behavior of a physical system over time.
Program variables (state variables) represent

the current state of the physical system Simulation program modifies state variables to model the evolution of the physical system over time.

Defense Simulations
Types of simulation Constructive: simulated people operating simulated equipment Virtual: real people operating simulated equipment, Live: real people operating real equipment Major application areas
Analysis War gaming, logistics

Defense Simulations
Platform level, Command level

Test and evaluation Hardware‐in‐the‐loop

Types of Simulation Models

Stochastic vs. Deterministic
Stochastic simulation: a simulation that

contains random (probabilistic) elements, e.g.,

Inter‐arrival time or service time of customers at a restaurant or store  Amount of time required to serve a customer

Output is a random quantity (multiple runs

required analyze output)

Stochastic vs. Deterministic
Deterministic simulation: a simulation

containing no random elements

Simulation of a digital circuit  Simulation of a chemical reaction based on differential equations

Output is deterministic for a given set of inputs

Static vs. Dynamic Models
Static models Model where time is not a significant variable Examples

Determine the probability of a winning solitaire hand Statistical sampling to develop approximate solutions to numerical problems

Static + stochastic = Monte Carlo simulation

Dynamic models Model focusing on the evolution of the system under investigation over time

Continuous vs. Discrete
State of the system is viewed as changing at

discrete points in time An event is associated with each state transition

Events contain time stamp

State of the system is viewed as changing

continuously across time System typically described by a set of differential equations

Overall View of M&S

Model Development Life Cycle

Determine Goals and Objectives
What do you (or the customers) hope to

accomplish with the model
May be an end in itself

Predict the weather  Train personnel to develop certain skills (e.g., driving)

More often a means to an end

Optimize a manufacturing process or develop the most cost effective means to reduce traffic congestion in some part of a city

Determine Goals and Objectives
Often requires developing a business case to

justify the cost
Improved efficiency will save the company

money Even so, may be hard to justify in lean times

Goals may not be known when you start the

One often learns things along the way

Develop Conceptual Model
An abstract (i.e., not directly executable)

representation of the system What should be included in model? What can be left out? What abstractions should be used
Level of detail Often a variation on standard abstractions

Develop Conceptual Model
Example: transportation

Fluid flow?  Queuing network?  Cellular automata?

What metrics will be produced by the model? Appropriate choice depends on the purpose of

the model

Develop Computational Model
 Executable simulation model  Software approach
 General purpose programming language  Special purpose simulation language  Simulation package

 Approach often depends on need for customization and

economics  Where do you make your money?  Defense vs. commercial industry  Other (non‐functional) requirements  Performance  Interoperability with other models/tools/data

Did I build the model right? Does the computational model match the

specification model? Largely a software engineering activity (debugging) Not to be confused with correctness (see model validation)!

 Did I build the right model?  Does the computational model match the actual (or

envisioned) system?  Typically, compare against  Measurements of actual system  An analytic (mathematical) model of the system  Another simulation model  By necessity, always an incomplete activity!  Often can only validate portions of the model  If you can validate the simulation with 100% certainty why build the simulation?

Steps in Model Development

Modeling and simulation is an important, widely

used technique with a wide range of applications
Computation power increases (Moore’s law) have

made it more pervasive In some cases, it has become essential (e.g., to be economically competitive) Rich variety of types of models, applications, uses

As easy (actually, easier!) to get wrong or

misleading answers as it is to get useful results Appropriate methodologies required to protect against major mistakes. Even so…

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful