Deficits in Cognitive Resilience of Commercial Pilots: The Case For a CRM Tenet on Computer Information and Automation in Digital Flight Operations

Open Access
Conference Proceedings
Authors: Mark MillerSam Holley

Abstract: Enhanced proficiency for commercial pilots operating in advanced digital technology flight operations is needed to address potential deficits in cognitive resilience. Cognitive resilience is needed when cognitive flow is disrupted or when unanticipated situations occur resulting in cognitive overload or confusion. The researchers propose adding a Digital Flight Deck Management tenet to the current Crew Resource and Threat Error Management model that would focus on successful responses to disruptive effects from computer information and automation operations. The researchers analysed these effects via three approaches. First, a human factors analysis applied an upgraded SHELL model to identify issues that affect cognition, situational awareness, and decision making. Second, evaluating data extracted from NTSB accident reports and ASRS GPS databases, an aviation safety analysis showed the commercial flight industry has become safer, but incidents involving computer information and automation error have increased by as much as 72%. Third, recent trends were examined to assess potential threats in the form of cyber-attacks, digital interference and loss of digital systems that affect digital flight operations. Movement toward efficiency gains are driving forces for increased use of digital information and automation. When considering the evolution and transition of the human-machine collaboration on the digital flight deck, and development of single pilot operations or distributed crewing for commercial flight, the researchers propose augmenting the CRM/TEM model by incorporating a Digital Flight Deck Management tenet to address potential deficits in cognitive resilience, situational awareness, and decision making.

Keywords: Digital Flight Deck, Crew Resource Management, Threat and Error Management, Situational Awareness, Decision Making Cognitive Resilience

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe1003921

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