Authors: Weyer, Johannes
Title: Can pilots still fly? Role distribution and hybrid interaction in advanced automated aircraft
Language (ISO): en
Abstract: Recent accidents of commercial airplanes have raised the question once more whether pilots can rely on automation in order to fly advanced aircraft safely. Although the issue of human-machine interaction in aviation has been investigated frequently, profound knowledge about pilots’ perceptions and attitudes is fragmentary and partly out-dated. The paper at hand presents the results of a pilot survey, which has been guided by a collaborative perspective of human-automation decision-making. It puts emphasis on the hybrid interaction of human actors and non-human technical agents and the role distribution in the digital cockpit. The key question is whether pilots have confidence in human-automation collaboration, even in the case of automated systems, which act more and more autonomously. The results are partly surprising: confidence in hybrid collaboration is rather high, depending mostly on perceived symmetry of humans and automation as well as on perceived change of competencies and role distribution. The perception of complexity is only average, and – most unexpected – this factor does not negatively affect pilots’ confidence in hybrid collaboration. The differences between Airbus and Boeing pilots are much lower than assumed, but pilots of regional jets, mostly flying short- or medium-range aircraft, differ from both groups remarkably, presumably due to their specific task profile, including a high number of opportunities to collaborate with automation.
Subject Headings: aviation automation
human-machine interaction
Issue Date: 2015-11
Provenance: TU Dortmund
Appears in Collections:Soziologische Arbeitspapiere

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