Go to content Go to navigation Go to search

Frequently Asked Questions

Got a question ? Then please don’t hesitate to mail us and we’ll publish an answer on the FAQ page as soon as we can.

What is MODAF ?
MODAF is the UK Ministry of Defence Architecture Framework. It is being developed by the MODAF Partners for the MOD. The purpose of MODAF is to provide a rigourous system of systems definition when procuring and integrating defence systems. It is based on the US DoD Architecture Framework (DoDAF).

When and how will MOD mandate MODAF ?
A MODAF Position paper is currently being prepared in which the MOD position with regards to mandation will be clarified.

What is an architecture framework ?
An Architecture Framework is a specification of how to organise and present an Enterprise Architecture. Because the discipline of Enterprise Architecture is so broad, and because the enterprises it describes are often large, it can result in very complex models. To manage this complexity, an Architecture Framework defines a standard set of model categories (called “Views” ) which each have a specific purpose. Some of the larger Architecture Frameworks define categories of views in terms of the domain they address – e.g. “business”, “technical”, “information”, etc. Also, they’re sometimes called “architectural frameworks”. Wikipedia Definition

What is enterprise architecture ?
The practise of enterprise architecture (EA) is about informing the business decision making process by understanding how complex organizations are structured, how they function, and what technology supports those functions. Wikipedia Definition

Why MODAF, why not just use DoDAF ?
The MOD Architecture Framework is based on the DoDAF specification, and will use many of the aspects of DoDAF without alteration. MODAF also adds a number of new views needed to support MOD-specific processes and structures.

What is DoDAF ?
The most mature and widely adopted architecture framework in the defence industry is the US DoD Architecture Framework (DoDAF). This framework has its origins in the C4ISR community and is seen as a fundamental part of the DoD’s drive towards Network Centric Warfare. The MOD Architecture Framework is to be based on the DoDAF specification, and will use many of the aspects of DoDAF.

Who has implemented MODAF ?
At this moment, several software vendor are implementing MODAF, but no implementations have yet been put forward for certification. See the tools section for more information.

What guidance is available for MODAF users ?
The MODAF specification was published in September 2005 and follows a similar format to the US DoDAF specification. The best place to start is with the executive summary and the appropriate deskbook for you community of interest. Advanced users and tool vendors would probably want to work with the Technical Handbook and the MODAF Meta-Model.

Does MODAF consider other Systems Engineering Standards ?
Members of the MODAF team have been active on the ISO AP233 project and the OMG SysML project, and the team includes INCOSE members. Both these standards have informed the development of MODAF, but the key drivers are the US DoD Architecture Framework and the UK MOD’s procurement policies.

How will tool selections be made in the MOD?
No one tool will be mandated across the whole of MOD in order to encourage a competitive market place for MODAF certified tools.

Why implement MODAF?
It provides a common “language” to describe MoD business, including: gives a means of managing across all lines of development / through life; allows the identification of overlap, duplication, gaps; enables unambiguous requirements that enhance interoperability; provides commonality and rigour to MoD processes; provides improved contextual information on the systems to the approving authorities; all of which allow more efficient use of the budget and delivery of enhanced capability. As a result, MODAF is seen as a critical enabler of delivering the MOD’s Network Enabled Capability (NEC).

What is the timescale for delivering the MOD architectural repository?
This is a dependency within MODAF that is being separately managed by the IA. It is intended that the architectural repository will be available by the time that a substantial number of architectural models are beginning to mature – ie part way into the MODAF roll-out programme. This is not seen as being a critical dependency because the although the non-availability of this repository will reduce the overall benefits, local benefits (eg within an IPT) will be unaffected.

What is the relationship between MODAF and the Systems Engineering process (eg ISO 15288)?
Any robust systems engineering process must include a design process that includes an architectural approach, such as MODAF. MODAF views provide inputs into most SE processes and are a good mechanism for documenting their outputs. The IA systems engineering management plan is a good example of this – each process stage being linked to the appropriate MODAF views.

The MOD are basing their Acquisition Management System (AMS) on ISO 15288. The AMS can be interrogated at www.ams.mod.uk . Therein see the ‘Acquisition Policy and Process Framework’ topic to see how ISO 15288 has been tailored by the MOD to shape the APPF.

In the AMS, the ‘Interoperability for CIS’ topic links (under ‘Reference Documents’) to the ‘CIS Interoperability web’. The guidance in that web is partitioned in accordance with the APPF. It is intended that during 2005 the guidance will be further developed in close cooperation with the MODAF Partners to address the exploitation of MODAF within Smart Acquisition. Anaudit trail between MODAF and the MOD interpretation of ISO 15288 will thereby be established.

Will MODAF be interoperable with US DODAF models?
Our prime interoperability concern is within the UK MOD’s own systems – after which we would like to achieve US and NATO interoperability. Like NATO, the starting point for MODAF has been DODAF with enhancements and modification to suit the MOD lifecycle and processes. Therefore we should be able to readily compare MOD architectures with those being generated within the DOD and NATO.

What is the MODAF Meta-Model ?
The MODAF Meta-Model extends the UML 2.0 meta-model to include the necessary semantics for MODAF. The model will enable architectural data exchange using XMI 2.1

Why is XMI used as the basis for tool interchange ?
Most (if not all) of the tool vendors that have attended the MODAF events already have an XMI capability in their tool.