This software implements a real-time access control protocol that is intended to make all connected users aware of the presence of other connected users, and which of them is currently in control of the system. Here, “in control” means that a single user is authorized and enabled to issue instructions to the system.

The software also implements a goal scheduling mechanism that can detect situations where plans for the operation of a target system proposed by different users overlap and interact in conflicting ways. In such situations, the system can either simply report the conflict (rejecting one goal or the entire plan), or reschedule the goals in a way that does not conflict.

The access control mechanism (and associated control protocol) is unique. Other access control mechanisms are generally intended to authenticate users, or exclude unauthorized access. This software does neither, and would likely depend on having some other mechanism to support those requirements.

This work was done by Andrew H. Mishkin, Daniel L. Dvorak, David A. Wagner, and Matthew B. Bennett of Caltech for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This software is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Dan Broderick at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. NPO-47732

This Brief includes a Technical Support Package (TSP).
Two Mechanisms to Avoid Control Conflicts Resulting from Uncoordinated Intent

(reference NPO-47732) is currently available for download from the TSP library.

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This article first appeared in the March, 2013 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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