Who's responsibility is it for the Design of Experiments and where exactly in the regulations does it explain who is responsible for its design?
The Chief/Lead Tester is responsible for including DOE in a Program’s TEMP. However, the PM has ultimate responsibility and should be able to rely on the advice and counsel of their Chief/Lead Tester and other key test experts/stakeholders.
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Aside from a best practice, DOE is considered the Gold Standard for test design. To date, there are currently no specific OSD mandates, Regulations, or Directives requiring DOEs. On the other hand, there have been several OSD Memorandums encouraging their use along with a couple of recent studies emphasizing their usefulness with the following [general] DOE characterizations:
· Represents a scientific, structured, objective way to span the operational envelope
· Serves as a powerful allocation of test resources for a given number of tests in a very cost effective manner
· Satisfies a fully integrated approach to testing
· Helps summarize test results through a disciplined and structured analysis methodology
For ACAT I and II Programs or Programs on the Oversight List, the TEMP is evaluated by OSD. If the TEMP does not adequately address DOE in the design and methodology for Testing, the TEMP will most likely be disapproved.
Cautionary note: There are cases when DOE may not be the best fit such as: (1) Test too small (e.g. event demo similar to JCTD; (2) Test is trivial and inexpensive; (3) Flight safety-related tests of various sorts; (4) First flight-type missions, etc.