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Effects of synthetic and enhanced vision technologies for lunar landings

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6 Author(s)
Kramer, L.J. ; NASA Langley Res. Center, Hampton, VA, USA ; Prinzel, L.J. ; Bailey, R.E. ; Arthur, J.
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Eight pilots participated as test subjects in a fixed-based simulation experiment to evaluate advanced vision display technologies such as enhanced vision (EV) and synthetic vision (SV) for providing terrain imagery on flight displays in a lunar lander vehicle. Subjects were asked to fly 20 approaches to the Apollo 15 lunar landing site with four different display concepts - Baseline (symbology only with no terrain imagery), EV only (terrain imagery from forward looking infrared, or FLIR, and light detection and ranging, or LIDAR, sensors), SV only (terrain imagery from onboard database), and fused EV and SV concepts. As expected, manual landing performance was excellent (within a meter of landing site center) and not affected by the inclusion of EV or SV terrain imagery on the Lunar Lander flight displays. Subjective ratings revealed significant situation awareness improvements with the concepts employing EV and/or SV terrain imagery compared to the baseline condition that had no terrain imagery. In addition, display concepts employing EV imagery (compared to the SV and baseline concepts which had none) were significantly better for pilot detection of intentional but unannounced navigation failures since this imagery provided an intuitive and obvious visual methodology to monitor the validity of the navigation solution.

Published in:

Digital Avionics Systems Conference, 2009. DASC '09. IEEE/AIAA 28th

Date of Conference:

23-29 Oct. 2009