Flight Deck Human Factors Research Laboratory
Katrina Avers, Ph.D., Manager
The Flight Deck Human Factors laboratory conducts a broad-based program of applied human factors research on causal factors associated with aviation accidents and issues involving the design, operation, and maintenance of flight deck equipment in the NAS. Research includes assessing the impact of advanced technologies, measurement of flight performance and risk, evaluating pilot/controller information transfer, determining the effects of stressors on human performance, identifying human factors involved in accidents and incidents, and quantifying the effects of advanced displays, procedures, and tasks design on pilot performance.
Employees perform aerospace human factors research on individual and organizational issues, displays and controls, human-machine interfaces, and procedural factors as they impact the performance of pilots in the NAS. Employees conduct research examining shiftwork and fatigue management as related to the aviation workforce. This has included examining fatigue countermeasures for pilots, maintenance technicians, and flight attendants. They identify affordable initiatives for enhancing aircrew performance and reducing accidents and incidents. This includes the:
- Design of cockpit controls and displays associated with emerging technologies;
- Development of performance-based criteria for use in certification regulation;
- Identification of human casual factors associated with aircrew and maintenance-related aviation accidents and incidents; and
- Effective use of training devices integrated with existing instructional systems.
This research is carried out by networked teams of division employees whose participation varies according to the background and experience required for each project.