Impact of automation on aircrew communication and decision-making performance.Int J Aviat Psychol. 1995; 5(2):145-67.IJ
Increasing levels of automation are being introduced into the cockpit. Yet, it is difficult to predict the impact of these automatic systems on other elements of flight, such as crew communication and the ability to arrive at an effective decision. This study attempted to clarify the relation among these variables. Forty-eight pilots were assigned to two-person crews and asked to fly a simulated mission in either automated or manual conditions using a low-fidelity simulator. The scenario was designed to require crewmembers to arrive at a collective decision based on information obtained about an evolving simulated disaster. The results indicated that the introduction of automation was not associated with better performance. However, several significant differences were observed in the communications of crews flying in the automated versus manual conditions. The results are discussed in terms of their implications for communications training for advanced technology aircraft.