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Visual flow display for pilot spatial orientation
Department of Psychology, Uppsala University,.
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Pilot spatial disorientation (SD) is a significant cause of incidents and fatal accidents in aviation. The pilot is susceptible to SD especially in low visibility when the visual system is deprived of information from outside the cockpit. This thesis presents the notion of visual flow displays as enhancement of symbology on flight displays primarily in low visibility for improved support of the pilot’s spatial orientation (SO) and control actions.

In Studies I and II, synthetic visual flow of forward ego-motion was presented on displays and postural responses were used as measures of display effectiveness in determining SO. The visual flow significantly affected SO, and although the increased stimulation of the visual periphery from a width of 45° to about 105° increased the effects there was no further effect at a width of about 150° (Studies I and II). Studies I and II also showed that omitting 20°- or 30°-wide central fields of view from the visual flow either reduced or not reduced the effects. Further, although inconclusive, Study II may indicate that horizon symbology in central visual field may enhance the effects of peripheral visual flow. The appropriate integration of peripheral visual flow with the head-up display symbology of the Gripen aircraft was presented.

Acceleration in a human centrifuge was used in Study III to investigate the effects of synthetic visual flow on the primarily vestibular-dependent somatogravic illusion of pitch-up. Two experiments revealed a reduced illusion with the visual flow. The results of Experiment 2 showed the visual flow scene not only reduced the illusion compared with a darkness condition but also compared with the visual scene without visual flow. Thus, similar to the main findings of Studies I and II, synthetic visual flow can significantly affect SO and supports the visually dependent SO system in an essential manner.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2010. , 110 p.
Series
, Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Social Sciences, ISSN 1652-9030 ; 53
Keyword [en]
Optic flow, visual flow, peripheral vision, spatial orientation, spatial disorientation, postural control, somatogravic illusion, human centrifuge, flight displays, head-up display, head-mounted display
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-28863ISBN: 978-91-554-7684-7OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-28863DiVA: diva2:645195
Public defence
2010-01-29, Uppsala, 14:42 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-09-04 Created: 2013-09-03 Last updated: 2013-09-04Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Effects of visual flow display of flight maneuvers on perceived spatial orientation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Effects of visual flow display of flight maneuvers on perceived spatial orientation
2005 (English)In: Human Factors, ISSN 0018-7208, E-ISSN 1547-8181, Vol. 47, no 2, 378-393 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Postural responses were utilized as measures of the effectiveness of a wide-angle visual flow display in determining perceived spatial orientation (SO). The general experimental setup included a 150 degrees x 34 degrees wide-field display showing flight over computer-generated ground with horizon. Simulated roll maneuvers on this display induced postural sway in the observer that was registered by a head-tracker system. Two experiments with 16 participants in each investigated the effects of visual flow, display exclusions in the central visual field, and display extensions into the visual periphery. Clear vestibular and proprioceptive suppression effects were demonstrated on postural sway with the inclusion of visual flow of forward ego motion in roll maneuvers. Compared with the full view, up to 20 degrees x 20 degrees central field omission either did not reduce the effect or reduced the effect but, frequently, only moderately. Limiting the display area to 45 degrees in the horizontal dimension reduced display effectiveness significantly, whereas a 105 degrees area did not, compared with the full view. Utilizing postural responses as indications of visual display resonance with our SO mechanism, actual or potential applications of this research include the design of an interface integrating flight-adapted visual flow to counteract or reduce pilot spatial disorientation.

National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-28858 (URN)
Available from: 2013-09-03 Created: 2013-09-03 Last updated: 2013-10-08Bibliographically approved
2. Toward a visual flow integrated display format to combat pilot spatial disorientation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Toward a visual flow integrated display format to combat pilot spatial disorientation
2010 (English)In: The International journal of aviation psychology, ISSN 1050-8414, Vol. 20, no 1, 1-24 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Aiming to ascertain basic display guidelines for improved support of pilot spatial orientation (SO), the visual resonance with the perceptual mechanism for SO was explored in 2 experiments. Postural responses indicated the efficiency of visual cues to control proprioception and equilibrium sense. A display design is suggested that integrates the results with the concepts for an operational head-up display symbology. By means of improved perception of integrated pitch, roll, and yaw information and resonance of synthetic visual flow with the SO mechanism, the design may in the future contribute to combatting pilot spatial disorientation.

National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-28861 (URN)10.1080/10508410903415922 (DOI)
Available from: 2013-09-03 Created: 2013-09-03 Last updated: 2013-11-13Bibliographically approved
3. Visual flow scene effects on the somatogravic illusion in non-pilots
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Visual flow scene effects on the somatogravic illusion in non-pilots
Show others...
2008 (English)In: Aviation, Space and Environmental Medicine, ISSN 0095-6562, Vol. 79, no 9, 860-866 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction: The somatogravic illusion (SGI) is easily broken when the pilot looks out the aircraft window during daylight flight, but it has proven difficult to break or even reduce the SGI in non-pilots in simulators using synthetic visual scenes. Could visual-flow scenes that accommodate compensatory head movement reduce the SGI in naïve subjects? Methods: We investigated the effects of visual cues on the SGI induced by a human centrifuge. The subject was equipped with a head-tracked, head-mounted display (HMD) and was seated in a fixed gondola facing the center of rotation. The angular velocity of the centrifuge increased from near zero until a 0.57-G centripetal acceleration was attained, resulting in a tilt of the gravitoinertial force vector, corresponding to a pitch-up of 30°. The subject indicated perceived horizontal continuously by means of a manual adjustable-plate system. We performed two experiments with within-subjects designs. In Experiment 1, the subjects (N = 13) viewed a darkened HMD and a presentation of simple visual flow beneath a horizon. In Experiment 2, the subjects (N = 12) viewed a darkened HMD, a scene including symbology superimposed on simple visual flow and horizon, and this scene without visual flow (static). Results: In Experiment 1, visual flow reduced the SGI from 12.4 ± 1.4° (mean ± SE) to 8.7 ± 1.5°. In Experiment 2, the SGI was smaller in the visual flow condition (9.3 ± 1.8°) than with the static scene (13.3 ± 1.7°) and without HMD presentation (14.5 ± 2.3°), respectively. Conclusion: It is possible to reduce the SGI in non-pilots by means of a synthetic horizon and simple visual flow conveyed by a head-tracked HMD. This may reflect the power of a more intuitive display for reducing the SGI.  

National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-28860 (URN)10.3357/ASEM.2264.2008 (DOI)
Available from: 2013-09-03 Created: 2013-09-03 Last updated: 2013-10-14Bibliographically approved

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