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Free Content Tactile Cueing in Detecting and Controlling Pitch and Roll Motion

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Bouak F, Kline J, Cheung B. Tactile cueing in detecting and controlling pitch and roll motion. Aviat Space Environ Med 2011; 82:951–8.

Background: Tactile cueing has been explored primarily for the detection of linear motion such as vertical, longitudinal, and lateral translation in the laboratory and in flight. The usefulness of tactile cues in detecting roll and pitch motion has not been fully investigated. Methods: There were 12 subjects (21–56 yr) who were exposed to controlled pitch and roll motion generated by a motion platform with and without tactile cueing. The tactile system consists of a torso vest with 24 electromechanical tactors and a tactor on each shoulder and under each thigh harness, respectively. While devoid of visual and auditory cues, each subject performed three tasks: 1) indicate motion perception without tactile cues (C1); 2) return to vertical from an offset angle (C2); and 3) maintain straight and level while the platform was continuously in motion (C3). Results: Our results indicated that in the absence of visual and auditory cues, subjects reported that the tactile system was useful in the execution of C2 and C3 maneuvers. Specifically, the presence of tactile cues had a significant impact on the accuracy, duration, and perceived workload. In addition, tactile cueing also increased the accuracy in returning to neutral from an offset position and in maintaining the neutral position while the platform was in continuous motion. Conclusions: Tactile cueing appears to be effective in detecting roll and pitch motion and has the potential to reduce the workload and risks of high stress and time sensitive air operations.
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Keywords: mental workload; spatial orientation; tactile displays

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 October 2011

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