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Pursuit Tracking and Higher Levels of Skill Development in the Human Pilot

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1 Author(s)

A model of the human pilot is offered for pursuit tracking tasks; the model encompasses an existing model for compensatory tracking. The central hypothesis in the development of this model states that those primary structural elements in the compensatory model responsible for the pilot's equalization capabilities remain intact in the pursuit model. In this latter case, effective low-frequency inversion of the controlled-element dynamics occurs by feeding-forward derived input rate through the equalization dynamics, with low-frequency phase "droop" minimized. The sharp reduction in low-frequency phase lag beyond that associated with the disappearance of phase droop is seen to accompany relatively low-gain feedback of vehicle output. The results of some recent motion cue research are discussed and interpreted in terms of the compensatory-pursuit display dichotomy. Tracking with input preview is discussed in a qualitative way. In terms of the model, preview is shown to demand no fundamental changes in structure or equalization and to allow the pilot to eliminate the effective time delays that accrue in the inversion of the controlled-element dynamics. Precognitive behavior is discussed, and a model that encompasses all the levels of skill development outlined in the successive organizations of perception (SOP) theory is finally proposed.

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Systems, Man and Cybernetics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:11 ,  Issue: 4 )