published in the open scientific literature whenever possible. In addition, those results, along with other findings from the basic science community, could be used to support more applied research to shape the development of the next generation of systems. All of the pieces of this circuit can be found in the sensory performance area, but, as noted, most of the success seems to lie in the first—evaluation—step, and there is little evidence of programmatic coordination between these steps.
• Some of the work, although well-intentioned, is not methodologically strong. For example, an interesting project on IED detection made good use of anecdotal accounts from soldiers in the field but never managed to convert those accounts into hypothesis-driven research with the statistical power to draw conclusions.
• Several projects have not been influenced by the relevant scientific literature. For example, a project on detection of muzzle flashes in the periphery would have benefited from more consideration of the vast clinical literature on detection of targets in peripheral vision.
• Overall, the empirical work is dated; that is, it is more typical of psychophysical work conducted 20 years ago. There is room in the basic science work for greater use of naturalistic stimuli and field data derived from opportunistic research, more consideration of the role of attention, and more modern theoretical constructs.
• The state-of-the-art EAR facility continues to be underutilized and lacks a world-class program of basic research. Here, and perhaps elsewhere (for example, in the area of visual perception and attention), it might be worth considering bringing in a senior researcher from academia on a temporary basis (e.g., via the Intergovernmental Personnel Act [IPA] mechanism) or permanent basis to help shape such a program.
The previous four items present an opportunity to reach out to the broader community in studies of sensation, perception, and attention. Funding vehicles such as the Army Research Office (ARO), multidisciplinary university research initiative (MURI) system, or the Collaborative Technology Alliance (CTA) vehicle could be used to foster productive relationships between those working in the basic sensory performance world and those interested in application of research to Army problems.
Overall Quality of Research
In general, the strongest work in the sensory performance area is customer-driven evaluation of equipment. The group is not yet a force in basic or applied research on sensory performance.
Changes Since the Previous Review
There have been two notable changes since the previous review. The first is an evolving focus on the interaction of physical and cognitive factors in soldier performance. The second is the completion of the SPEAR facility, giving this research thrust a particularly strong set of tools for research. Current physical and cognitive performance interaction research consists of three thrust areas aimed at quantifying the effects of soldier equipment on physical and cognitive performance and their interaction: (1) Developing new measurement methods/devices for collecting cognitive and physical performance data in operationally relevant environments, (2) Employing traditional and new metrics to quantify the