Perezgonzalez & Lee explored the ergonomization needs of student pilots in 20091. They asked a group of student pilots3 which technological features they wanted to have when flying (with costs also included as part of those features). The group comprised New Zealand student pilots who already had obtained their private pilot licences (PPL) and were on a continuation course towards their air transport pilot licences (ATPL). These pilots had also completed at least one navigational flight requiring them to fly solo over long distances. Both requirements were important as they allowed the student pilot some experience from which to draw an opinion regarding the technological features under research.
The student pilots selected, from a list of 28 technological features, those that they wished to have in their flying. They also valued the selected features on their relative importance to each other. Of relevance here is that these students did not have experience with a glass-cockpit, but with a conventional one, so most of them had no direct experience with the technological features under research (although some students may have had access to some of them by way of bringing their own third-party technologies, such as smartphones or laptops with flight support programs installed, into the cockpit).
The research results are presented in table 1. Overall, the student pilots highly valued technological features that helped them with their flying (e.g. onboard display of navigation charts, airspace awareness functionality, pre-flight route planning, and TCAS functionality), low running costs, post-flight analysis displayed on navigation charts, and equipment portability.
|Table 1. Relative importance of ergonomization features to student pilots2|
|Onboard display of navigation charts||4.0||important|
|Airspace awareness functionality||3.9||important|
|Low operational costs||3.9||important|
|Post-flight feedback on navigation charts||3.8||important|
|Pre-flight route planning functionality||3.6||important|
|Weather and airspace planning support||3.5||important|
|Onboard display of track flown||3.5||important|
|Real-time onboard monitoring||3.4||medium importance|
|Onboard display of route to follow||3.4||medium importance|
|Onboard display of elevation||3.4||medium importance|
|Low set up costs||3.4||medium importance|
|Post-flight feedback on satellite maps||3.1||medium importance|
|Post-flight feedback of elevation flown||3.1||medium importance|
|Real-time remote monitoring||2.9||medium importance|
|Onboard display of satellite maps||2.9||medium importance|
|Recording of flight parameters per second||2.8||medium importance|
|Full communication capabilities||2.7||medium importance|
|Post-flight feedback in 3-D||2.6||medium importance|
|Onboard 3-D displays||2.5||medium importance|
|Recording of multiple flight parameters||2.2||little importance|
|Full post-flight video playback functionality||2.0||little importance|
|Post-flight video playback capability||1.6||little importance|
|Fleet monitoring functionality||1.5||little importance|
|Onboard display of street maps||0.8||very little importance|
|Post-flight feedback on street maps||0.6||very little importance|
|*average value out of 54|
Want to know more?
- AviationKnowledge - Ergonomization
- This AviationKnoweldge page offers links to further information on aviation ergonomization.
- Perezgonzalez & Lee's (2009) abstract
- The original abstract can be found under the "2009 Symposium Proceedings" tab, as PEREZGONZALEZ Jose D & Seung Yong LEE (2009a). New technologies for the student pilot. Aviation Education and Research Proceedings, volume 2009, pages 10-11. ISSN 1176-0729.
Jose D PEREZGONZALEZ (2010). School of Aviation, Massey University, New Zealand (JDPerezgonzalez).