Date of Award

Winter 1996

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Engineering Management & Systems Engineering

Committee Director

Derya A. Jacobs

Committee Member

Resit Unal

Committee Member

Charles Keating


Effective planning for the modernization of U.S. Air Force fighter aircraft requires a perception of the future tasks these aircraft will be called upon to perform, and the improvements and modifications that will be required to successfully accomplish those tasks. A great deal of research has been done in the areas of military strategy, quality function deployment, capital budgeting, and goal programming, as separate areas of study. This thesis details the research and analysis performed for a project called The Fighter Configuration Plan (FICOP), in which these areas were integrated in a decision support model to aid the Air Force in modernization planning. The unique modernization planning approach developed through this analysis has fundamentally changed the way the Air Force plans for modernizing fighters. This research process developed a perception of the future tasks based on a framework known as Strategies to Task (STT), incorporated Quality Function Deployment (QFD) to develop metrics for the various modernization projects, and used an Integer Goal Programming Model to perform the capital budgeting. This decision support model was applied to the problem of developing long-term modernization plans for each of the existing fighter aircraft (F-16 Fighting Falcon, F-15 Eagle, F-117 Nighthawk and A-10 Thunderbolt II).