This project will create a novel modeling framework to assess and control interdependent critical infrastructure systems (ICIs). Infrastructure systems are critical to the functioning of our society, and the services they deliver form the backbone of the health, safety, and security of our nation. These systems are complex, comprised of many interdependent components. Further, these systems are interdependent, with the performance of one system dependent on the performance of one or more of the others. This leaves ICIs vulnerable to a variety of hazards, both natural and manmade. This project will study how to improve the resilience of these systems, with the recognition that achieving resilience will be a shared responsibility among stakeholders. At the same time, more and more data is becoming available to assess the states of ICIs both under normal conditions and over time.
This project will take a multidisciplinary approach, integrating across engineering, computation, and policy to create a powerful stakeholder-driven framework that models ICIs across scales and utilizes data across sources to evaluate the current status of infrastructures and make predictions on their performance and reliability. The researchers will study three ICIs in particular: transportation, power, and communications infrastructure, applying the framework to the study of these ICIs in two specific communities, one urban and one rural. The framework will be created in conjunction with the development of new processes to achieve stakeholder buy-in and policy adoption to support integration of the new technology with policy. With fast algorithms to solve the models of the framework and real-time (or near-real-time) data collection capabilities, a powerful resilient infrastructure management system that can react, adapt, and even proactively take precautionary actions in anticipation of impending disasters is envisioned.
The results of this project will also be integrated into extensive classroom and educational research activities, training the next generation of scientists, engineers, and policymakers on the importance of critical infrastructure resilience and in the development of new multi-disciplinary methods and tools to achieve resilience.