With advances in display and control methods and recent developments in sensor and microelectronic technologies, the term automation, especially as it pertains to the cockpit of a tactical aircraft, has taken on a totally new dimension. No longer are we restricted to automation as it pertains to solely flight managment functions. Functions such as realtime situation assessment, tactics selection and trajectory control are all candidates for partial or total automation. In addition, adaptive vehicle subsystem reconfigurations as a function of tactical posture, onboard faults and ongoing emergencies are all within the purview of onboard automation. In order to realize these rather ambitious goals it is suggested that no one class of models is adequate in providing the necessary onboard intelligence to enhance overall performance and reduce workload. Rather, a multi-model integrated approach that relies on a compendium of models from such diverse fields as artificial intelligence (AI) and expert systems, decision analysis, control theory and simulation is suggested as a basis for introducing onboard automation. This approach relies on the selective use of one or more of these models depending on the specific tactical function and mission requirement being addressed at the time.