Psychological Attributes Critical to the Performance of MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper U.S. Air Force Sensor Operators
AIR FORCE RESEARCH LAB BROOKS CITY-BASE TX HUMAN PERFORMANCE WING (711TH)
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Remotely Piloted Aircraft RPA operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other areas of operation are escalating as the force protection capabilities of such aircraft are fully realized in surveillance, reconnaissance, and precision-strike operations. Never in the history of warfare have uninhabited vehicles assumed such a critical role in such a vast array of theater operations. As a result, the aircrew of RPA aircraft work around the clock to provide support capabilities, flying one of the worlds most advanced aerial weapons systems. However, there is minimal research on the assessment and selection of enlisted aircrew i.e., Sensor Operators, SOs who fill a critical role. At the present time, there are no published studies on the critical attributes of successful MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper SOs. The purpose of this study was to consolidate data from several subject matter experts regarding the attributes needed to successfully complete training and adapt to operational demands. The results of the study aim to increase understanding of specific psychological attributes critical to performance, and to improve aeromedical assessment and selection procedures.
- Pilotless Aircraft