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Concept to Control -- Using Virtual Reality to Test UGV Man-Machine Interfaces and to Control UGV Systems

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 19800
Amount: $594,568.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: N/A
Award Year: 1996
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
Suite B-101, 1919 Green Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48105
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Charles J. Jacobus, Ph.d.
 (313) 668-2567
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution

Many man-machine interface features of the modern unmanned ground vehicle control station require sophisiticated trade-offs be made. For instance, the need to transmit video information from a vehicle for teleoperation greatly exceeds the current capability of military radios to transmit this information. The remote operator needs advanced video compression techniques to support low data rate and supervised driving modes which involve trading off bandwidth with temporal lag, image resolution, and frame update rate. This proposal advocates the development of an approach to control interface design based on operator focus of attention modeling. Our approach is to enhance early man-machine interface (MMI) definition through a virtual reality environment for UGV control which supports implementation of a rapid succession of prototype user control interfaces. These MMIs inherently incorporate metering, i.e. quantitative measurement of operator performance for benchmark mission activities. The overall approach leverages the current art in constructing virtual reality systems and new technology in human operator response metering developed at Cybernet (for DARPA). Also work now underway at Cybernet to develop an advanced multiple vehicle operator control station for DEMO II provides an ideal path for technology migration into main line US Army UGV program activities later.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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