A Platoon-Level Model of Communication Flow and the Effects on Operator Performance
ARMY RESEARCH LAB ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD HUMAN RESEARCH AND ENGINEERING DIRECTORATE
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The Future Combat System FCS initiative is at the center of the Armys Objective Force Vision. The Army Vision 2010 states that U.S. forces must have information superiority the capability to collect, process, and disseminate an uninterrupted flow of information while exploiting or denying an adversarys ability to do the same. In other words, the Future Force will be empowered by dominant situational understanding. To predict how proposed systems and displays will impact situational understanding and decision making, the U.S. Army Research Laboratorys Human Research and Engineering Directorate used the tool C3TRACE command, control, and communication techniques for reliable assessment of concept execution. C3TRACE is a modeling environment in which one can develop multiple concept models for any size organization, staffed by any number of people, using any type of information technology, performing any number of functions and tasks, and under various communication and information loads. Among the performance measures tracked are Soldier utilization the number of messages received, dropped, and interrupted and the degree to which the information is available to support Soldier decision making. C3TRACE was used to develop a platoon-level model of an FCS conceptual configuration in support of the situational understanding as an enabler for the unit of action maneuver team Soldiers Army Technology Objective. The platoon model assumed wrist-mounted displays for the dismounted Soldiers and laptop-type displays for the mounted Soldiers. In general, the Soldiers using the laptop-type display were able to fully process more of their incoming messages and made no decisions with poor information quality. On the other hand, the majority of the Soldiers using the personal digital assistant had high utilization, higher numbers of dropped and interrupted messages, and decisions made with poor information quality.
- Information Science
- Computer Hardware