Cognitive Measures and Models for Persistent Surveillance

Award Information
Department of Defense
Award Year:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
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Small Business Information
Radiance Technologies Inc.
350 Wynn Drive, Huntsville, AL, -
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Solomon Gibbs
Principal Investigator
(614) 327-2514
Business Contact:
Brad Atkins
Sr. Contracts Administrator
(256) 489-8584
Research Institution:

ABSTRACT: Wide Area Motion Imagery (WAMI) is a rapidly developing sensing modality characterized by the collection of Electro-Optical or Infra-Red (EO/IR) images with very large spatial extents. Exploitation of this motion image data is challenging due to the size of the geographic area covered by the sensor collection and the complexity of urban environments where WAMI sensors are typically employed. While WAMI shares attributes of other, well-understood, sensor data such as EO/IR imaging, Full Motion Video, and Ground Moving Target Indicator radar, it is a distinct modality and research is required to understand how it can be best employed. Accordingly, Radiance Technologies, Inc. proposes the development of an Operator Function Model (OFM) to facilitate the understanding of cognitive demands WAMI places on military imagery analysts. The operator function modeling methodology will allow us to target specific functions within in the analysis task and to design cognitive aides that directly address potentially problematic cognitive demands, heuristics, or biases. Our research will consist of three phases: original investigative research and analysis of existing work in analogous systems; development of an operator function model for WAMI analysis; and derivation of measures of effectiveness via expert understanding of human cognition as applied to the OFM. BENEFIT: Initial research and cognitive task analysis studies will directly benefit Wide Area Motion Imagery (WAMI) analysts by identifying cognitive barriers and providing recommendations for overcoming them. Additionally, we anticipate broader applicability of our research in the general fields of information overload; dynamic, time-critical decision making; and trust in automation. These are topics of general interest within the intelligence community, and critical needs for WAMI analysts who have no choice but to rely on automated aides or face the dissolution of their attention in a scene too large and too detailed to fully attend. The knowledge developed as a result of our research will not only benefit the Air Force, but will be available for license to any WAMI data consumer. Our work in reducing the cognitive demands on WAMI analysts is directly relatable to WAMI system vendors. Further, Radiance has a robust software development capability and may choose to directly implement the concepts developed under this effort itself. We will develop a platform-independent solution that will allow us to bring validated human-machine interaction concepts to future experimental and Quick Reaction Capability (QRC) systems, as well as to our initial development environment. This will benefit the warfighter by establishing a higher baseline for analyst effectiveness in using QRC and experimental systems and will benefit system integrators in transitioning systems to fully operational use.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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