The Development of a Novel Motion Cuing Algorithm for Flight Training Simulators Employing Objective Metrics for Evaluation
The value of a dynamic motion platform to the flight simulator is a controversial issue within the flight training community. The motion of the flight simulator platform has been shown to affect pilot performance and behavior. Moreover, its ability to provide the operator with the appropriate motion cues is essential for pilot training or research. Unwanted cues can cause the operator to develop inappropriate control behavior strategies that are not useful or might be dangerous in real flight. Performance studies show that the operator’s performance is enhanced when introducing motion which might indicate that the operator experiences a sensation closer to real flight which should reflect positively on the pilot’s training. However, most transfer of training studies show no major benefit after being trained in a flight simulator with or without a motion system. Resolving these discrepancies and testing for flight simulator training effectiveness requires very time consuming and expensive testing of human performance, both in the aircraft and the simulator. My research aims to tackle this problem by developing a control theoretic approach with novel ideas that include; 1) developing a novel structural model of a human-in-the-loop control system, 2) developing an algorithm which accounts for the fusion of the information from the various sensory channels based on frequency domain prominence, 3) developing an algorithm which incorporates the effects of learning and adaptation of a human operator, 4) investigating and implementing new vestibular, neuromuscular and sommatosensory system models using frequency and time domain analyses. This structural model approach permits the development of metrics for determining the training effectiveness of the simulator motion system, or any other simulator stimuli by measuring pilot control behaviour. An additional aim is to develop a perceptually based motion cuing algorthim (AKA washout filters), which eliminates the false cues caused by the major reduction in workspase of the simulator motion system relative to the actual vehicle. It also optimizes the avalaibale bandwidth of the motion platform.