Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mechanical Engineering

Committee Chair/Advisor

Dr. Cameron Turner

Committee Member

Dr. Gregory Mocko

Committee Member

Dr. John Wagner


The ability to assess technical feasibility, project risk, technical readiness, and realistic performance expectations in early-phase conceptual design is a challenging mission-critical task for large procurement projects. At present, there is not a well-defined framework for evaluating current practices of organizations performing computational trade studies. One such organization is the US Army Ground Vehicle Systems Center (GVSC). When defining requirements and priorities for the next-generation autonomy-enabled ground vehicle system, GVSC is faced with the challenge of an increasingly complex programmatic tradespace due to emerging complexities of ground vehicle systems. This thesis aims to document and evaluate tradespace processes, methods, and tools within GVSC. A systematic review of the literature was conducted to investigate existing gaps, limitations, and potential growth opportunities related to tradespace activities reflecting the greater body of knowledge observed in the literature. Following this review, an interview-based study was developed through which a series of interviews with GVSC personnel was conducted and subsequently benchmarked against the baseline established in the literature. In addition to characterizing the current practices of tradespace exploration and analysis within GVSC, the analysis of the collected interview data revealed current capability gaps, areas of excellence, and potential avenues for improvement within GVSC. Through this thesis, other organizations can perform similar self-assessments to improve internal capabilities with respect to tradespace studies.

Author ORCID Identifier 0000-0001-5067-4597



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