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Proceedings Paper

Simulation assessment of synthetic vision system concepts for UAV operations
Author(s): Gloria L. Calhoun; Mark H. Draper; Heath A. Ruff; Jeremy T. Nelson; Austen T. Lefebvre
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Paper Abstract

The Air Force Research Laboratory's Human Effectiveness Directorate supports research addressing human factors associated with Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) operator control stations. One research thrust explores the value of combining synthetic vision data with live camera video presented on a UAV control station display. Information is constructed from databases (e.g., terrain, etc.), as well as numerous information updates via networked communication with other sources. This information is overlaid conformal, in real time, onto the dynamic camera video image display presented to operators. Synthetic vision overlay technology is expected to improve operator situation awareness by highlighting elements of interest within the video image. Secondly, it can assist the operator in maintaining situation awareness of an environment if the video datalink is temporarily degraded. Synthetic vision overlays can also serve to facilitate intuitive communications of spatial information between geographically separated users. This paper discusses results from a high-fidelity UAV simulation evaluation of synthetic symbology overlaid on a (simulated) live camera display. Specifically, the effects of different telemetry data update rates for synthetic visual data were examined for a representative sensor operator task. Participants controlled the zoom and orientation of the camera to find and designate targets. The results from both performance and subjective data demonstrated the potential benefit of an overlay of synthetic symbology for improving situation awareness, reducing workload, and decreasing time required to designate points of interest. Implications of symbology update rate are discussed, as well as other human factors issues.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 May 2006
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 6226, Enhanced and Synthetic Vision 2006, 62260E (19 May 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.665633
Show Author Affiliations
Gloria L. Calhoun, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Mark H. Draper, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Heath A. Ruff, General Dynamics (United States)
Jeremy T. Nelson, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Austen T. Lefebvre, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6226:
Enhanced and Synthetic Vision 2006
Jacques G. Verly; Jeff J. Guell, Editor(s)

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