Increasing situational awareness in ground vehicles using mixed reality displays
4 April 2022 • 8:30 AM - 8:50 AM EDT
Accurate situation awareness (SA) gives mounted and dismounted warfighters the information to quickly make decisions and to rapidly take decisive action on the urban battlefield. Increased SA should allow personnel in ground vehicles to be more effective, while reducing the threat from enemy gunfire when exposed. For this experiment, we investigated whether an augmented reality (AR) display would increase SA for tank commanders and in-transit Soldiers. We constructed an enclosure that simulated the limited view of the outside world a tank commander would get from inside a tank, as well as having a hatch that could be opened to see a more expansive view. Large screen, high resolution displays provided outdoor imagery of an urban environment under different environmental conditions. This enclosure could also be reconfigured to mimic the process of exiting a personnel carrier, where the Soldier has no view of the outside world and then transitions to an expansive view. We tested SA Photonics' wide field of view, high resolution, AR eye wear that displayed directional cues to help the tank commander and Soldier locate threats after opening the hatch and standing up or exiting the vehicle. We found that an AR directional cue was perceived as highly effective for target acquisition and resulted in statistically significant improved performance as measured by search times for both the tank commander and Soldier. This improved performance was found in both clear and rainy environments, and with and without a see-through armor preview.
SA Photonics, Inc. (United States)