near future is the development of decision aids for conflict resolution and maintaining separation. These aids should be directed primarily toward ensuring proper spacing between aircraft in preparation for the final stages of approach to landing and toward en route flight path efficiency improvement.

RECOMMENDATION 2: The panel recommends implementation of high levels of automation of decision and action selection for system tasks involving relatively little uncertainty and risk. However, for system tasks associated with greater uncertainty and risk, automation of decision and action selection should not proceed beyond the level of suggesting a preferred decision/action alternative. Any consideration for automation above this level must be designed to prevent: loss of vigilance, loss of situation awareness, degradation of operational skills, and degradation of teamwork and communication. Such designs should also ensure the ability to overcome or counteract complacency, recover from failure, and provide a means of conflict resolution if loss of separation occurs.

RECOMMENDATION 3: The panel recommends that the choice of manual (operator initiated) or automatic action implementation be guided by the level of automation of decision and action selection. Manual (or vocal) implementation is advised at the higher levels of automation of decision and action selection, at which automation narrows the decision action alternatives to a few, and more particularly at the level of automation of decision and action selection at which a single preferred decision/action is suggested. This manual (vocal) implementation will encourage the operator to review the contents of the recommended decision.

RECOMMENDATION 4: The panel recommends that the availability of computer technology not be a reason for automation in and of itself. Clear requirements for functionality that can be achieved only by computer technology should drive design choices.

RECOMMENDATION 5: The panel recommends that the choice of what functions to automate be guided by recognizing human strengths and the need to compensate for human vulnerabilities.

Adaptable Automation

Adaptable automation can benefit system performance by providing for the regulation of operator workload, reduction of complacency, and maintenance of manual skills.

The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement