Raytheon BBN Technologies is working on developing techniques that would extend the functionality of mobile applications for up to 100 years, as part of a $7.8m contract awarded by the US Air Force (USAF).
The USAF has awarded the four-year contract under the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Building Resource Adaptive Software Systems (BRASS) programme.
BRASS aims to design and implement survivable and complex software systems that are robust against changes in the physical and logical resources provided by their ecosystem.
The company, in collaboration with Securboration, Oregon State University, Vanderbilt University and Syracuse University, will develop techniques to make mobile applications viable, despite changes in hardware, operating system upgrades and supporting services.
Raytheon BBN principal scientist Partha Pal said: "Mobile apps are pervasive in the military, but frequent operating system upgrades, new devices and changing missions and environments require manual software engineering that is expensive and causes unacceptable delays.
"We are developing techniques to eliminate these interruptions by identifying the way these changes affect application functionality and modifying the software."
The Raytheon-led team will develop a set of static and dynamic discovery techniques to identify the ways in which changes in the application's ecosystem can affect the software's functionality.
A set of transformation technologies will also be developed, which will modify the software as needed to adapt to these changes and provide software usefulness for many years.
Additionally, a software framework will be created to demonstrate and evaluate software evolution in response to ecosystem changes.