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Support of decisions in the preflight phase
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Industrial Economics and Management (Dept.).
2007 (English)In: Proceedings of the Eighth International NDM Conference / [ed] K. Mosier & U. Fischer, 2007Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

After a reorganisation at a minor Swedish airline, the pilots’ work process in preflight has changed. In the reorganisation, there are added tasks for the pilots, which the pilots manage with support of a handheld device. In this study, support of decisions in the preflight phase is investigated, and in particular support of decisions involved in the added tasks. The data gathering includes jump-seat observations and semi structured interviews with pilots at the airline.

In the preflight phase the pilots prepare for later flying phases and several decisions have to be made. With the handheld device the pilots are provided a wider picture of the flight, which implies that the pilots are more “in the loop”, but the added tasks also mean an increased workload. The decisions would be improved, if the design in the device or the Standard Operating Procedures required cross-checking of input and output data. Such kind of feedback loops would support learning and prevent over and under reliance of the device.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007.
Keyword [en]
Technological support, Human-Machine Interaction, Decision-making, Feedback, Automation, Aviation
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-7975OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-7975DiVA: diva2:13170
Conference
NDM 8, Eighth International Conference on Naturalistic Decision Making
Note
QC 20101109Available from: 2008-02-12 Created: 2008-02-12 Last updated: 2010-11-09Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Decision Making in Preflight Operations: A study of memory supports and feedback
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Decision Making in Preflight Operations: A study of memory supports and feedback
2008 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this thesis is to explore how support systems enable human control within normal flight operations. The thesis focuses on the use of memory supports during flight, such as a handheld computing device, memory strategies and checklists. The support systems are studied from the theoretical perspective of Human Factors. In particular, decision making theories have contributed to the thesis. From previous research it is found that feedback to the operator in case of a human error is essential to keep him or her in a safe sequence of decisions and actions.

To facilitate the pilots’ tasks in cockpit, computing devices are out on the market. Several of the technical aids are computers installed in cockpit whereas others are smaller, portable devices with hardware not specifically designed for use in cockpit. Jump-seat observations have been performed at an airline company to explore the pilots’ work process in cockpit where a handheld computing device, with hardware not specifically designed for cockpit, is in use. Subsequent semi-structured interviews were conducted to receive the pilots’ experiences of findings from the observations and to receive descriptions of decisions and support systems.

The thesis includes a description of flight operations from a pilot perspective. The main focus is on operations in the preflight phase where the new computing device is used. Identified characteristics in flight operations are factors such as cooperation, communication, interruptions. Furthermore, identified factors in the decision making were such as routine, environmental constraints, discrete alternatives and dependency between decisions. Feedback points during the sequence of tasks performed with the handheld computing device were distinguished. These points are moments when feedback is possible. For example, when the pilots cross-check tasks they receive feedback from each other. It was found that the pilots did not use every opportunity to receive feedback on their performance. The reason of the non-used feedback point was that it was not required by the Standard Operating Procedures or by any functions or design of the device. Within flight operations in general, it was found that the most important techniques to detect a human error such as a memory lapse were by pilots’ earlier experiences, the use of checklists and by receiving feedback from the other pilot.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2008. 55 p.
Series
Trita-IEO, ISSN 1100-7982 ; 2008:02
Keyword
Human Factors, Man-Machine Systems, Decision Making, Decision Support, Feedback, Commercial Aviation
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-4634 (URN)978-91-7178-863-4 (ISBN)
Presentation
2008-02-27, Albert Danielsson, SingSing, Lindstedtsvägen 30, Stockholm, 10:00
Supervisors
Note
QC 20101109Available from: 2008-02-12 Created: 2008-02-12 Last updated: 2011-03-07Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
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More styles
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  • de-DE
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  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf