I.A. Khrystova MSc


Commercial off the Shelf (COTS) policy at DMO: consequences of implementing COTS products and components in naval military assets

November 2011
Scientific Supervisors: P.J.T. Bakker, MSc  & Peter Van Gestel, MSc, Delta-Pi
Expert Supervisor: P.J.  Kense, MSc, Marinebedrijf
Date: January 11th 2012

The use of COTS products and components has been suggested as implicitly providing considerable benefits in terms of applying new technological developments and saving cost and time. However, the success of the use  of COTS items largely depends upon a coherent policy and systematical engineering processes for mitigating risks connected with their short life cycle, replacement strategy, obsolescence character and as a consequence  the  financial impact on maintenance support and availability of military assets.

Due to the lack of a systematic approach, early decisions that have been made to use COTS products and components without consideration of consequences, turned out to hamper an effective maintenance support of military assets. The assumed ”faster, better, cheaper” features of COTS however, might invoke problems such as rapid obsolescence, no clear definition of COTS as product group in the contracts with suppliers, absence of Form-Fit-and Function (FFF) replacements, overpricing of COTS components and non-supportability of particular COTS components.

This thesis defines elements to be taken into consideration in order to establish an internal COTS policy, which aims at structurally taking into account different aspects of COTS. These are to be preliminary contemplated in order to prepare and conduct an effective support of naval military assets during the exploitation phase.

Within this approach, requirements for the policy foundation have been derived from the outcome of a gap analysis questions list and a set of assessment criteria affecting the maintenance process effectiveness. The gap analysis contents and the assessment criteria for this thesis have been determined and refined through a number of distinct study cases.

Conclusions and recommendations for the internal COTS policy have been made in the scope of the total quality approach with interrelated domains and processes. It has also been determined that in order to make COTS policy effective and to achieve an effective maintenance process for naval military assets considering the use  of COTS products and components, minimum 75% of the assessment criteria which have been proven through four study cases, are to be met. 

De Thesis kunt u hier bekijken (EN).

De Thesis presentatie kan hier bekeken worden (EN).

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