MESA

A Model for Multiple-Exchange Synthesis and Analysis

by Donald E. Emerson

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Technical description of MESA, a fully interactive, highly modularized computer model designed to analyze a variety of possible sequences of battle situations. Each of the two contestants — the "attackers" and the "defenders" — can draw on as many as eight classes of forces, each of which can possess up to five types of weapons. The usefulness of MESA derives from a bookkeeping system that permits the analyst to organize the calculations needed to estimate the outcome of a battle involving a complex series of force exchanges. Casualties in each engagement are computed by one of five attrition models. The two contestants can recover and rearm as well as launch their weapons. MESA is designed to accommodate on-the-spot changes in various factors and rapid rerunning of the problem; MESA can be modified for automatically sequenced runs with variations in the input data for use in sensitivity analyses. Appendixes include a sample calculation, MESA organization, and a JOSS computer program.

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