An increasing degree of automation in air traffic will also change the role of the air traffic controller (ATCO). ATCOs will fulfill significantly more monitoring tasks compared to today. However, this rather passive role may lead to Out-Of-The-Loop (OOTL) effects comprising vigilance decrement and less situation awareness. The project MINIMA (Mitigating Negative Impacts of Monitoring high levels of Automation) has conceived a system to control and mitigate such OOTL phenomena. In order to demonstrate the MINIMA concept, an experimental simulation set-up has been designed. This set-up consists of two parts: 1) a Task Environment (TE) comprising a Terminal Maneuvering Area (TMA) simulator as well as 2) a Vigilance and Attention Controller (VAC) based on neurophysiological data recording such as electroencephalography (EEG) and eye-tracking devices. The current vigilance level and the attention focus of the controller are measured during the ATCO’s active work in front of the human machine interface (HMI). The derived vigilance level and attention trigger adaptive automation functionalities in the TE to avoid OOTL effects. This paper describes the full-scale experimental set-up and the component development work towards it. Hence, it encompasses a pre-test whose results influenced the development of the VAC as well as the functionalities of the final TE and the two VAC’s sub-components.
Gravity circulation loop for the cryopumps of the space simulator is introduced, and two phase mathematic model of flow heat transfer is analyzed as well. Based on this model, the liquid nitrogen (LN2) gravity circulation loop including its equipment and layout is designed and has served as LN2 feeding system for cryopumps in one large space simulator. With the help of control software and human machine interface, this system can be operated flexibly, simply, and automatically under four conditions. When running this system, the results show that the cryopumps can be cooled down and maintained under the required temperature, 120 K.
Analysis of EEG brainwave provides information on mental or emotional states. One of the particular states that can have various applications in human machine interface (HMI) is concentration. 8-channel EEG signals were measured and analyzed. The concentration index was compared during resting and concentrating periods. Among eight channels, locations the frontal lobe (Fp1 and Fp2) showed a clear increase of the concentration index during concentration regardless of subjects. The rest six channels produced conflicting observations depending on subjects. At this time, it is not clear whether individual difference or how to concentrate made these results for the rest six channels. Nevertheless, it is expected that Fp1 and Fp2 are promising locations for extracting control signal for HMI applications.
A game using electro-oculography (EOG) as control signal was introduced in this study. Various EOG signals are generated by eye movements. Even though EOG is a quite complex type of signal, distinct and separable EOG signals could be classified from horizontal and vertical, left and right eye movements. Proper signal processing was incorporated since EOG signal has very small amplitude in the order of micro volts and contains noises influenced by external conditions. Locations of the electrodes were set to be above and below as well as left and right positions of the eyes. Four control signals of up, down, left and right were generated. A microcontroller processed signals in order to simulate a DDR game. A LCD display showed arrows falling down with four different head directions. This game may be used as eye exercise for visual concentration and acuity. Our proposed EOG control signal can be utilized in many other applications of human machine interfaces such as wheelchair, computer keyboard and home automation.