Saturday, November 25, 2006

Virtual Cockpit facilitates unmanned aircraft operation

Advances in UI used for user-centered virtual cockpit ...

"Raytheon Company today unveiled the Universal Control System (UCS) -- a first of its kind unmanned aerial system (UAS) "cockpit" that revolutionizes operator awareness and efficiency, while providing the ability to control multiple unmanned aircraft, reduce potential accidents, improve training, and decrease costs. The announcement was made during today's Shephard UV North America 2006 conference in Tysons Corner, Va.

... "We broke down the operator's tasks and objectives and constructed a system built entirely around them, rather than building the system around the air vehicle first, without input from the operators. Improvements included adding a wrap-around display to enhance operator effectiveness. We wanted to put the operator in the UAS 'cockpit' virtually and dramatically enhance his or her situational awareness. UCS operators will have better situational awareness than any manned platform, which dramatically improves safety."

... Raytheon designed and developed the UCS to meet operator demands and decrease human factors issues when operating a UAS. The enhanced operating system addresses ergonomic concerns and caters to the needs of the operators to help them perform their jobs more effectively.

In addition, the system gives the operator the option of standing or sitting and provides flexibility in controlling multiple functions. Moreover, the technology provides a safer work environment for operators, keeping their minds more focused to perform their missions more effectively and safer. The UCS system can control multiple dissimilar UASs simultaneously, with software designed and developed by Raytheon.

Raytheon developed an intuitive interface technology, which makes UAS operators much more effective in learning the UCS system and with significantly less training. The gaming industry has invested billions of dollars in developing advanced human interface technologies which are simple and intuitive; Raytheon leveraged the technologies and adapted them to the UCS system."    (Continued via ThomasNet)    [Usability Resources]

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