The U.S. Army Aeroflightdynamics Directorate (AFDD) conducted a study on alternative unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) sensor operator input devices for next generation operators and assessed the gamer skill set as it related to advantages in UAV operations. Six highly rated pilots and six experienced video game players were tested while utilizing three different operator sensor control devices. Participants flew UAV reconnaissance missions on pre-set routes, identifying all targets and distractors. Subjective ratings were collected to determine any variances in operator workload between devices. Results showed performance advantages in both skill sets when using an alternative sensor control design, favoring reduced mental translation for operator input. Overall, possessing the gamer skill set enhanced mission performance and mitigated perceived workload.
Shively, R. J.,
& Flaherty, S. R.
(2007). Alternative UAV Sensor Control: Leveraging Gaming Skill. 2007 International Symposium on Aviation Psychology, 644-650.