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Application of human-autonomy teaming to an advanced ground station for reduced crew operations  (2017)
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Within human factors there is burgeoning interest in the "human-autonomy teaming" (HAT) concept as a way to address the challenges of interacting with complex, increasingly autonomous systems. The HAT concept comes out of an aspiration to interact with increasingly autonomous systems as a team member, rather than simply use automation as a tool. The authors, and others, have proposed core tenets for HAT that include bi-directional communication, automation and system transparency, and advanced coordination between human and automated teammates via predefined, dynamic task sequences known as "plays." It is believed that, with proper implementation, HAT should foster appropriate teamwork, thus increasing trust and reliance on the system, which in turn will reduce workload, increase situation awareness, and improve performance. To this end, HAT has been demonstrated and/or studied in multiple applications including search and rescue operations, healthcare and medicine, autonomous vehicles, photography, and aviation. The current paper presents one such effort to apply HAT. It details the design of a HAT agent, developed by Human Automation Teaming Solutions, Inc., to facilitate teamwork between the automation and the human operator of an advanced ground dispatch station. This dispatch station was developed to support a NASA project investigating a concept called Reduced Crew Operations (RCO); consequently, we have named the agent R-HATS. Part of the RCO concept involves a ground operator providing enhanced support to a large number of aircraft with a single pilot on the flight deck. When assisted by R-HATS, operators can monitor and support or manage a large number of aircraft and use plays to respond in real-time to complicated, workload-intensive events (e.g., an airport closure). A play is a plan that encapsulates goals, tasks, and a task allocation strategy appropriate for a particular situation. In the current implementation, when a play is initiated by a user, R-HATS determines what tasks need to be completed and has the ability to autonomously execute them (e.g., determining diversion options and uplinking new routes to aircraft) when it is safe and appropriate. R-HATS has been designed to both support end users and researchers in RCO and HAT. Additionally, R-HATS and its underlying architecture were developed with generaliz ability in mind as a modular software applicable outside of RCO/aviation domains. This paper will also discuss future further development and testing of R-HATS.
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Automation, Control, Crew, Ground, HAT, Human-Autonomy Teaming, Operations, RCO, Reduced, Station
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In 2017 IEEE/AIAA 36th Digital Avionics Systems Conference (DASC) (pp. 1-4). IEEE
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Adobe PDF Icon  08102124.pdf (Download Acrobat Reader Click to download Adobe Acrabat Reader)
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Curator: Phil So
NASA Official: Alonso Vera
Last Updated: August 15, 2019