Alex Konkel

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Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) operations are increasing rapidly. UAS would like to operate similarly to current aircraft in the National Airspace System (NAS), including communicating with air traffic control and possibly each other. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is evaluating a potential voice communications system that would allow this to see if the system’s latency and voice intelligibility are sufficient to meet FAA requirements. This paper describes the results of the first phase of voice intelligibility testing. Participants completed two tests, a Message Completion Test developed by the Human Factors Branch and the Modified Rhyme Test, with the audio being sent through the FAA’s voice switch test bed. Participants also completed a short questionnaire to rate the audio for intelligibility and acceptability. We found that intelligibility varied across switches but was acceptable, with no statistical impact of the UAS voice communications system.