Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Herbert Colle (Advisor)

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


The present study investigated performance and mental workload when an operator supervises multiple UCAVs. This study focused on the parameters that affect the operator's performance during a simulated UCAV suppression of enemy air defenses (SEAD) mission, which is expected to be the primary function of the UCAV. All three manipulated factors, including the number of vehicles to be supervised, vehicle airspeed, and difficulty level of attacks (targets engaged by either a single vehicle or multiple vehicles), affected both performance and subjective mental workload measures. A performance mental workload redline was defined as the point at which accomplishment scores no longer increased. Performance redlines were estimated using piecewise linear functions of accomplishment scores. Redlines indicated that for simple scenarios operators could effectively control about 12 UCAVs flying at 900 knots or 8 UCAVs flying at 1500 knots. For complex scenarios, operators could effectively control 8 UCAVs flying at 900 knots.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Psychology

Year Degree Awarded