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Pilot performance in centrifuge-based simulation of unusual attitude recovery

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Author: Ledegang, W.D. · Groen, E.L. · Wentink, M.
Type:article
Date:2012
Source:Journal of Aircraft, 4, 49, 1161-1167
Identifier: 463530
doi: doi:10.2514/1.C031629
Keywords: Aviation Simulation · Attitude recovery; G-loads; Limit Load; Pilot performance; Recovery control Engineering controlled terms: Behavioral research; Centrifuges; Experiments Engineering main heading: Recovery · Defence, Safety and Security · Human · PCS - Perceptual and Cognitive Systems · BSS - Behavioural and Societal Sciences

Abstract

This paper describes two simulator experiments studying how accurately pilots can judge and reproduce specific g loads and how their control behavior depends on the sensation of physical g loads during unusual attitude recovery. Seventeen commercial pilots participated. The first experiment shows that pilots tend to overestimate g loads, resulting in performance below the target g load. With brief training, their performance instantly improved up to adequate levels. However, a retest after 6 months shows that this improvement did not endure. The second experiment shows that centrifuge-based g cueing helps pilots to recover from a nose-low unusual attitude, with significantly smaller deviations and within the limit load, whereas in the fixed-base condition they tend to pull almost 20% too much g load. It is concluded that physical g cueing results in improved upset recovery control and may contribute to more realistic and adequate recovery training. Copyright © 2011 by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc. All rights reserved.