Automated Feedback and Situation Awareness in Net-Centric C3
Technical rept. Mar 2006-Jun 2007
ARMY RESEARCH INST FOR THE BEHAVIORAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCES ARLINGTON VA
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The goal of net-centric warfare NCW is to give soldiers an information advantage that leads to a war-fighting advantage. However, NCW systems are quite complex and dynamic, characteristics which can lead to impaired situation awareness SA and increased mental workload. It has been suggested that an automated alerting system would help Soldiers focus their attention on mission critical events. This series of experiments investigated how automated audio-visual alerts affect user SA and perceived workload. Two similar experiments were conducted. In each experiment, participants viewed a simulation of a net-centric system, the Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below FBCB2, which included an automated alerting system. SA and workload were measured both with the alerting system enabled and disabled. In the second study, the difficulty of the monitoring task was increased and the automated alerts included a pop-up pictorial representation of the critical event. Results indicate that automated alerting systems do not improve user SA, but they also do not impair user SA. However, mental workload was significantly lower when alerts were enabled. These results can be used to aid decisions about whether or not to include automated alerts in NCW systems.
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Command, Control and Communications Systems