Actual application of the technology in its final form and under mission conditions, such as those encountered in operational test and evaluation.
Examples include using the system under operational mission conditions.
Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) are a method of estimating technology maturity of Critical Technology Elements (CTE) of a program during the acquisition process.
They are determine during a Technology Readiness Assessment (TRA) that examines program concepts, technology requirements, and demonstrated technology capabilities.
TRL are based on a scale from 1 to 9 with 9 being the most mature technology.The primary systems engineering objective is to gain sufficient technical knowledge to develop the program’s System Requirements Document (SRD) and to verify that the system solution(s) required technology is sufficiently mature, has a TRL 6 or above, before proceeding into an end-item design or Milestone B.The Technology Development Strategy (TDS) will describe how a program plans to mature it’s CTE before proceeding into Milestone B.Fidelity of breadboard technology increases significantly. The basic technological components are integrated with reasonably realistic supporting elements so it can be tested in a simulated environment. Represents a major step up from TRL 6, requiring demonstration of an actual system prototype in an operational environment such as an aircraft, vehicle, or space.Technology has been proven to work in its final form and under expected conditions.This is a natural consequence of FP7 and also H2020 offering calls themed as “Research” (RA), “Innovation” (IA) or “Research and Innovation” (RIA) actions, along at times with “Coordination and Support Action” (CSA).With RA, IA and RIA consuming the largest amount of funds available in either programme, Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) are naturally an important measure of progress for EC funded projects.The use of TRLs enables consistent, uniform, discussions of technical maturity across different types of technologies.Decision authorities will consider the recommended TRLs when assessing program risk. Once basic principles are observed, practical applications can be invented. This includes analytical studies and laboratory studies to physically validate analytical predictions of separate elements of the technology.In almost all cases, this TRL represents the end of true system development.Examples include developmental test and evaluation of the system in its intended weapon system to determine if it meets design specifications.