Pilot Performance and Heart Rate during In-Flight use of a Compact Instrument Display.
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION WASHINGTON DC OFFICE OF AVIATION MEDICINE
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Instrument panels in many general aviation aircraft are becoming increasingly crowded, presenting the pilot with an instrument scanning problem. Because most aircraft instruments require use of central foveal vision, the pilot must look directly at each instrument to obtain needed information, taking time that may not be available during an instrument approach to published minimums. It was thought that the problems of adequate scanning of the instruments might be alleviated by reducing and changing the size of certain instruments and utilizing the pilots peripheral vision. An in-flight study of pilot performance was conducted while using an experimental instrument display. The display was used in flight by low-time and high-time professional pilots. The major findings of this study indicate that pilot performance with the high-contrast instrument display, which employs a vertical and horizontal format and occupies substantially less space than conventional instruments, is equal to pilot performance with conventional instruments, in spite of little familiarization time and without regard to pilot experience. No difference in stress as measured by heart rate was evident between the experimental and conventional displays. Subjective reaction of the pilot-subjects to the new type display was favorable. Panel space requirements can be reduced by at least 25 percent by use of the design concepts outlined in this study. Author
- Flight Control and Instrumentation
- Human Factors Engineering and Man Machine Systems