Predicting Operator Capacity for Supervisory Control of Multiple UAVs


With reduced radar signatures, increased endurance and the removal of humans from immediate threat, uninhabited (also known as unmanned) aerial vehicles (UAVs) have become indispensable assets to militarized forces. UAVs require human guidance to varying degrees and often through several operators. However, with current military focus on streamlining operations, increasing automation, and reducing manning, there has been an increasing effort to design systems such that the current many-toone ratio of operators to vehicles can be inverted. An increasing body of literature has examined the effectiveness of a single operator controlling multiple uninhabited aerial vehicles. While there have been numerous experimental studies that have examined contextually how many UAVs a single operator could control, there is a distinct gap in developing predictive models for operator capacity. In this chapter, we will discuss previous experimental research for multiple UAV control, as well as previous attempts to develop predictive models for operator capacity based on temporal measures. We extend this previous research by explicitly considering a cost-performance model that relates operator performance to mission costs and complexity. We conclude with a meta-analysis of the temporal methods outlined and provide recommendation for future applications.

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-540-72696-8_2

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@inproceedings{Cummings2007PredictingOC, title={Predicting Operator Capacity for Supervisory Control of Multiple UAVs}, author={Mary L. Cummings and Carl E. Nehme and Jacob W. Crandall and Paul J. Mitchell}, booktitle={Innovations in Intelligent Machines}, year={2007} }