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8 September 2004 Near-to-eye display concepts for air traffic controllers
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Tower controllers are responsible for maintaining safe separation between airborne aircraft in the airport traffic control area, and separation between aircraft, equipment, and personnel on the airport surface. The objective of this project was to develop and demonstrate an out-the-window, augmented viewing system concept for Air Force air traffic control tower personnel to reduce look-down time within the tower and to optimize visual airfield operations, particularly during limited visibility conditions. We characterized controller tasks where a near-to-eye display greatly aids performance and identified form factor variables that influence user acceptability of hardware configurations. We developed an "out-the-window concept of operation" and analyzed the hardware requirements and feasibility of three near-to-eye viewing systems: two head-mounted monocular displays (HMMD) and a held-to-head binocular display (HHBD). When fully developed, these display prototypes should enhance tower controller situation awareness, and reduce such distractions as having to frequently attend to and respond to head-down (console) display information. There are potential users of this display concept in all branches of the military services, and in the commercial sector. There is also potential utility for surface surveillance operations in support of homeland security, law enforcement personnel, rescue workers, firefighters, and special operations forces in non-aviation applications.
© (2004) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
John W. Ruffner, Jim E. Fulbrook, and Marc Foglia "Near-to-eye display concepts for air traffic controllers", Proc. SPIE 5442, Helmet- and Head-Mounted Displays IX: Technologies and Applications, (8 September 2004);

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