WorldCat Identities

United States Office of Aerospace Medicine

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Works: 299 works in 659 publications in 1 language and 36,333 library holdings
Genres: Bibliography 
Classifications: RC1054.U5, 617.715402462913
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Most widely held works by United States
Index of international publications in aerospace medicine by Melchor J Antuñano ( )
6 editions published between 2001 and 2010 in English and held by 505 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
The 3rd edition of the Index of International Publications in Aerospace Medicine is a comprehensive listing of international publications in clinical aerospace medicine, operational aerospace medicine, aerospace physiology, environmental medicine/physiology, diving medicine/physiology, aerospace human factors, as well as other topics directly or indirectly related to aerospace medicine. The Index is divided into six major sections: I) Open Publications in General Aerospace Medicine, II) Government Publications in General Aerospace Medicine, III) Publications in Other Topics Related to Aerospace Medicine and Aerospace Human Factors IV) Proceedings From Scientific Meetings in Aerospace Medicine and Psychology, V) Journals, Newsletters, and Bulletins in Aerospace Medicine and Aerospace Human Factors, and VI) On-line Databases Containing Bibliographic, Regulatory, and Safety Information in Aerospace Medicine and Related Disciplines
Solar Radiation Alert System by Kyle Copeland ( )
5 editions published between 2005 and 2009 in English and held by 323 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
The Solar Radiation Alert (SRA) system continuously evaluates measurements of high-energy protons made by instruments on GOES satellites. If the measurements indicate a substantial elevation of effective dose rates at aircraft flight altitudes, the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute issues an SRA via the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Weather Wire Service. This report describes a revised SRA system. SRA issue-criteria remain the same but significant improvements have been made in the calculations. The solar proton fluence to effective dose conversion coefficients have been recalculated using 2007 recommendations of the International Commission on Radiological Protection and the latest release of the Monte Carlo transport code, MCNPX 2.6.0. The shape of the <10 MeV secondary neutron spectrum is now accounted for down to 100 eV. The flux correction based on spectral index has been revised to smooth the flux spectrum of solar protons. Estimates of the >605 MeV spectral shape have been improved by the addition of correction factors for the differential interpretation of the >700 MeV integral flux channel. Estimates of galactic cosmic radiation background count rates in the GOES data are now median rather than mean values. Estimated solar cosmic radiation dose rates are about 10 times higher than those made using the previous version of the SRA system
Reliability of the gas supply in the Air Force Emergency Passenger Oxygen System final report by Robert P Garner ( )
4 editions published in 2005 in English and held by 199 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
To test for any potential leakage and therefore an inadequate quantity of oxygen, the protective breathing equipment (PBE) procured by the U.S. Air Force as Emergency Passenger Oxygen System (EPOS) units were collected from Air Force bases and submitted by the manufacturer for a series of tests. The primary indicator in the testing was the mass (weight) of oxygen in the cylinder. A total of 92 oxygen cylinders that were manufactured for assembly into EPOS or similar models of PBE were evaluated. Estimated dates of manufacture were between January 1989 and November of 2003. Four tests were conducted. Based on the results of the altitude testing, the loss did not appear to be related to diffusion out of the cylinder. Therefore, other explanations need to be examined as to why these two cylinder shortages existed
Fatality and injury rates for two types of rotocraft accidents final report by David Palmerton ( )
3 editions published in 2005 in English and held by 199 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
This study analyzes the frequency of rotorcraft accidents involving fatalities and injuries to determine if certain types of accidents are inherently more dangerous in relation to rapid evacuation capability. Four categories of accidents were analyzed: those involving a fire, those without a fire, those in which the rotorcraft rolled over, and those without a rollover. It was hypothesized that rollover accidents create evacuation delays that produce more fatalities, particularly in situations involving a rollover and post-crash fire, where evacuation delays may expose occupants to toxic fumes longer than they would be if the rotorcraft remained upright and the evacuation only required occupants to quickly step out of the rotorcraft
Flight attendant fatigue recommendation II flight attendant work/rest patterns, alertness, and performance assessment. by Peter G Roma ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 187 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Impaired performance induced by fatigue may compromise safety in commercial aviation. Given the direct role flight attendants play in passenger safety, the U.S. Congress ordered a comprehensive examination of fatigue in cabin crew, including a field study of actual flight operations. This report provides an overview of the field study results, focusing on objective measures of sleep patterns and neurocognitive performance (Psychomotor Vigilance Test, PVT) over a 3-4 week period in 202 U.S.-based flight attendants of all seniority levels working for network, low-cost, and regional carriers embarking on domestic and international flight operations. On average, flight attendants slept 6.3 hr on days off and 5.7 hr on work days, fell asleep 29 min after going to bed, awoke four times per sleep episode, and spent 77% of each episode actually sleeping. After controlling for reserve status, gender, and age, junior-level flight attendants had the shortest sleep latencies on their days off. Those working international operations slept significantly less (4.9 hr vs. 5.9 hr) and less efficiently (75% vs. 79%), compared with their colleagues in domestic operations. All flight attendants exhibited significant impairments during pre-work PVT tests when compared to their own optimum baseline performance. Across the workday, regional flight attendants committed fewer premature PVT responses, junior-level participants produced significantly higher post-work reaction times, and those working international flights produced better pre-work reaction times but had a greater increase in lapses. These objective data are consistent with other shift work research and echo subjective survey findings across the U.S. flight attendant community. Additional planned analyses of this dataset may identify the precise operational variables that contribute to fatigue in cabin crew
Flight attendant fatigue by Joy O Banks ( )
2 editions published in 2009 in English and held by 181 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
In 2008, Congress directed the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) to conduct follow-on studies of six recommendation areas noted in an integrated report by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and CAMI regarding flight attendant fatigue. The report concluded that some degree of fatigue-related performance affects were likely under current prescriptive rules. Internationally, fatigue risk is managed almost solely through prescriptive rules based on the maximum hours of work and minimum hours of rest. Traditional prescriptive rules, however, have limited applications to round-the-clock operations, often excluding fatigue-contributing factors such as time zone transitions, layover and recovery, time of day, and circadian rhythms (Cabon et al, 2009). Prescriptive rules directly affect crew scheduling and are critical to operator viability; however, due to economic recession, operators are routinely scheduling up to the regulation limits, which could result in an increased likelihood of fatigue and fatigue-related mishaps (Nesthus, Schroeder, Connors, et al., 2007). In the present study, we obtained regulations (n=38) and collective bargaining agreements (CBA) (n=13) regarding flight attendant duty time and rest from International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) member states using several resources: Civil Aviation Authority Web sites, an international cabin safety symposium, Web-based ICAO information exchange, and FAA international field offices and aviation safety inspectors. We analyzed each regulation and CBA to identify duty time and rest rules related to working hour limits, sleep and rest requirements, circadian rhythms, and other factors. When comparing the United States (U.S.) maximum hours of work and minimum hours of rest with other countries, we concluded that U.S. prescriptive rules are among the least restrictive, representing a greater than typical risk for fatigue related incidents
Toxicological findings in 889 fatally injured obese pilots involved in aviation accidents ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 179 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Obesity continues to be a public health concern and its impact on aviation community has not been fully evaluated. Toxicological findings in fatally injured aviation accident obese pilots were examined. Toxicological results and aeromedical histories of these aviators were retrieved from the CAMI toxicology and medical certification databases, and the cause/factors in the related accidents were retrieved from the National Transportation Safety Board's aviation accident database. In 311 of the 889 pilots, carbon monoxide, cyanide, ethanol, and drugs were found. Many of these drugs were for treating overweight, depression, hypertension, and cardiac conditions. Of the 889 pilots, 107 had an obesity-related medical history. The health and/or medical condition(s) of, and/or the use of ethanol and/or drugs by, pilots were the cause/factors in 55 (18%) of the 311 accidents. Findings emphasize monitoring of obesity and diabetes in pilots and understanding the potential implications of these health conditions in relation to flight safety
An analysis of the U.S. pilot population from 1983-2005 evaluating the effects of regulatory change ( )
2 editions published in 2009 in English and held by 178 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
The size of the U.S. civil aviator community has been of interest to researchers, policy makers, and special interest groups. A strict definition for membership in the U.S. pilot population was used that was based on Scientific Information System principles. This approach provides methods for scientists to describe, quantify, and predict changes in this population over the 23-year study period. The Bioinformatics Research Team at the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) analyzed and modeled the counts of the U.S. pilot population using a segmented linear regression model. A dataset was constructed, based upon the methods prescribed by Scientific Information System principles of data construction, from 1983 to 2005. This methodology was selected since the data represent the entire population of pilots, rather than just a sample. Thus, the statistical results are population parameters, rather than estimates, and are not subject to sampling error. The airmen population was constructed and examined for each year of the study period. The criterion for membership of the U.S. civil pilot population is based on the medical examination that each airman must pass to hold a pilot certificate. A segmented linear regression model was chosen because of its flexibility in accounting for any policy changes that occurred over the 23-year study period. The CAMI Scientific Information System provided the foundation to build a segmented linear regression model pertaining to the counts of the U.S. civil pilot population; from these results it was possible for the first time to explain the changing frequencies over time and make fact-based predictions concerning future population numbers. The capability now exists to categorize the population by gender, medical class, age, and experience over a two-decade time period. The model constructed clearly shows a decline in the overall U.S. civil aviator community
Isolation of RNA from peripheral blood cells a validation study for molecular diagnostics by microarray and kinetic RT-PCR assays -- application in aerospace medicine ( )
2 editions published between 2003 and 2004 in English and held by 178 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Gene expression studies in clinical diagnostic settings involve a large number of samples collected at different time points requiring effective methods for collection, transportation, storage, and isolation of RNA to maintain the integrity of expression profiles. Human whole blood is a vital source of RNA for analysis of environmental exposure since blood constituents maintain homeostasis, effect immunity or inflammation, participate in stress signaling, and mediate cellular communication in vascular associated tissues including those of the central nervous system. Isolation strategies using whole blood should recognize the limited quantities of useful RNA that must be protected from the hostile leukocyte ribonucleases, in addition to the abundance of preformed mRNA in reticulocytes, high protein content, and transcriptional activation of cells during sample processing in vitro. This paper presents data showing how the collection, treatment, and storage of collected blood samples can affect subsequent RNA isolation and analysis. It is further demonstrated that total RNA isolated from human whole blood, using a modified and optimized procedure of PAXgene Blood RNA reagent kits, performed well in cDNA microarray hybridization and kinetic RT-PCR. Preservation of expression patterns was observed for 96% of the mRNAs after 24 h storage at 4 C by hybridization analysis of 100 mRNA targets. There were no detectable changes in expression levels of 2 housekeeping genes, b-actin and cyclophilin, for up to 10 days storage at 4 C by RT-PCR. This validated protocol was employed for isolation of RNA from blood samples collected in the study of acute ethanol effects on performance and characterization of ethanol inducible biomarkers related to performance impairment. The ultimate goal is to utilize gene expression analysis for aerospace accident investigation and prevention
Effects of laser illumination on operational and visual performance of pilots conducting terminal operations by Van B Nakagawara ( )
2 editions published in 2003 in English and held by 177 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Several hundred incidents involving the illumination of aircrew members by laser light have been reported in recent years. Consequently, FAA Order 7400.2 was revised to establish new guidelines for Flight Safe Exposure Limits (FSEL) in specific zones of navigable airspace. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the performance of test subjects exposed to laser radiation while performing approach and departure maneuvers in the Critical Flight Zone (CFZ). Pilot performance was assessed in a Boeing 727-200, Level C, flight simulator using four levels of laser illumination (0, 0.5, 5, and 50 muW/cm2) and three operational maneuvers (takeoff and departure, visual approach, and instrument landing system ILS approach). Subjective responses were solicited after each trial and during an exit interview. The pilots were asked to rate on a scale from 1 to 5 (1 = none, 2 = slight, 3 = moderate, 4 = great, and 5 = very great) the affect each laser exposure had on their ability to operate the aircraft and on their visual performance. Average subjective ratings were calculated for each exposure level and flight maneuver, and an analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed. Thirty-four pilots served as test subjects for this study. Average subjective ratings for operational and visual performance were 1.57 and 1.74, 1.89 and 2.15, 2.43 and 2.76, for the 0.5, 5 (i.e., CFZ), and 50 muW/cm2 laser exposure levels, respectively. ANOVA found a significant difference (p <0.05) between the subjective ratings for each exposure level. No significant differences were found between the types of flight maneuvers or between the ratings for operational and visual performance themselves for a given maneuver or exposure level. The FSEL of 5 muW/cm2 was validated for pilots illuminated by laser light while conducting terminal operations in the CFZ
A summary of unmanned aircraft accident/incident data : human factors implications by Kevin W Williams ( )
3 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 176 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
A review and analysis of unmanned aircraft (UA) accident data was conducted to identify important human factors issues related to their use. UA accident data were collected from the U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force. Classification of the accident data was a two-step process. In the first step, accidents were classified into the categories of human factors, maintenance, aircraft, and unknown. Accidents could be classified into more than one category. In the second step, those accidents classified as human factors-related were classified according to specific human factors issues of alerts/alarms, display design, procedural error, skill-based error, or other. Classification was based on the stated causal factors in the reports, the opinion of safety center personnel, and personal judgment of the author. The percentage of involvement of human factors issues varied across aircraft from 21% to 68%. For most of the aircraft systems, electromechanical failure was more of a causal factor than human error. One critical finding from an analysis of the data is that each of the fielded systems is very different, leading to different kinds of accidents and different human factors issues. A second finding is that many of the accidents that have occurred could have been anticipated through an analysis of the user interfaces employed and procedures implemented for their use. This paper summarizes the various human factors issues related to the accidents
The effects of NEXRAD graphical data resolution and direct weather viewing on pilots' judgments of weather severity and their willingness to continue a flight by Dennis B Beringer ( )
2 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 176 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
A study was conducted to determine how variations in displayed NEXRAD weather data resolution interact with the pilot's direct view of weather. Pilots (32) were assigned to on of four groups; 8km, 4km, or 2km resolution, and a baseline condition without NEXRAD imagery. Each flew the simulator from Santa Rosa, NM with the intent to land at Albuquerque. Heavy precipitation moved into the area during the flight, and pilots were required to decide, using both the NEXRAD data and their out-the-window view, whether to continue or to divert to an alternate airport. Pilots spent more time looking at higher-resolution images than at the lower-resolution ones. Baseline-and 2km-condition pilots deferred their decisions longer than did the other two groups
Demographics and vision restrictions in civilian pilots clinical implications : final report by Van B Nakagawara ( )
2 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 174 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) permits airmen with certain medical conditions or diseases to be medically certified, provided that such action does not compromise aviation safety. The FAA Office of Aerospace Medicine helps guide policy decisions through the study of common medical pathologies, including visual disorders and the use of new ophthalmic devices and refractive procedures by airmen. To perform this function properly, an in-depth knowledge of the airman population is required. This study examined demographic statistics for the civil airman population, including vision pathologies, for the period 1976 to 2001 and their relevance to the clinical care of aviators by eyecare practitioners
U.S. airline transport pilot international flight language experiences ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 173 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"In 1998, the International Civil Aviation Organization took a heightened interest in the role of language in airline accidents. Member states agreed to take steps to ensure air traffic control personnel and flight crews involved in flight operations in airspace where the use of the English language is required were proficient in conducting and comprehending radiotelephony communications in English. This report is a compilation of written responses and comments by U.S. pilots from American, Continental, Delta, and United Airlines of their difficulties in international operations. In this report, the pilots' responses to questions 46-53 are presented as a compiled narrative. Their responses had eight major thrusts from which we derived the following five recommendations: (1) Adopt a standard dialect for use in ATC communications. (2) All trainees and current certified professional controllers successfully complete instruction and training in the principles of voice production and articulation as it relates to ATC communication. (3) Define an optimal rate of speech for use by certified professional controllers when communicating with pilots. Research is needed to provide guidance on the optimal rate of speech for different populations of speakers - U.S., Foreign. (4) Develop new standard phraseology for non-routine events. Generally, the controller needs to have the pilot answer one question, "What do you need from me?" The controller would coordinate the appropriate actions to provide the pilot with what is needed. (5) Controllers should be discouraged from using local jargon, slang, idiomatic expressions, and other forms of conversational communications when transmitting messages to pilots. Although colorful and fun, they have no place in air traffic control and diminish situational awareness, can lead to requests for repeat, and otherwise disrupt information transfer."--Report documentation page
Causes of general aviation weather-related, non-fatal incidents analysis using NASA aviation safety reporting system data by William Knecht ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 173 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"Adverse weather remains a major cause of general aviation accidents. However, weather alone is never the sole culprit. Searching for other salient causal factors, we turned to incident analysis. Incidents are less serious than accidents, but far more common, and have witnesses to better determine causes. The current research examined 100 GA weather-related incident reports made to the Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) during 2005-06. With pilot permission, ASRS gathered additional data on nearly 300 variables related to possible root causes. The following factors seemed to constitute a problem for 5%, or more, of pilots: 1. Darkness (4 dusk +17 night = 21% of pilots). 2. Moisture affecting visibility (clouds, fog, rain, snow > 50%) and/or air movement affecting aircraft handling (thunderstorm, icing, turbulence > 25%). 3. Multiple weather factors experienced simultaneously (85%). 4. Failure to get a preflight weather briefing, or "briefing" with only a low-grade (non-aviation-oriented) source (5%). 5. Deterioration of weather forecast accuracy over time (66% correct forecasts at departure, decreasing to 37% correct at destination). 6. Weather that materialized worse than predicted (35%. This implicitly includes lack of en-route forecast updates). 7. Lack of weather-related training and experience (> 50%, non-instrument-rated and new instrument-rated pilots). 8. Inadequate equipment (less-experienced pilots tend to have less-capable airframes and avionics). 9. Ambulance missions (7%, particularly helicopter ambulance). 10. "Non-weather-related factors" : decision-making (26%), time pressure (21%), "get-home-itis" (9%), aircraft equipment problem (8%), fatigue (7%), distraction by passenger or crew (5%). In broad terms, this analysis reveals two major at-risk target groups with distinct training needs: 1. Non-instrument-rated pilots 2. Newly minted instrument-rated pilots."--Report documentation page
Use of traffic displays for general aviation approach spacing a human factors study by Eric D Nadler ( )
4 editions published in 2007 in English and held by 173 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
A flight experiment was conducted to assess human factors issues associated with pilot use of traffic displays for approach spacing. [snip] Pilots successfully used the displays to maintain the assigned spacing on visual and instrument approaches. The spacing deviations were significantly lower when using the displays during visual approaches than when attempting to maintain spacing without a traffic display. [snip] While the traffic display reduced visual reacquisition times, this effect was only found with pilots whose displays showed additional traffic (not only the traffic-to-follow). In general, however, the additional traffic was associated with less time between fixations on the display and higher workload. Subjects appeared to have had difficulty identifying an optimal display range that would simultaneously provide traffic awareness and spacing task performance. The traffic display necessarily requires visual attention and reduces the attention available for scanning the instrument panel and on visual approaches, the outside world. --P. iii
U.S. airline transport pilot international flight language experiences ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 173 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
In 1998, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) took a heightened interest in the role of language in airline accidents. Its Air Navigation Commission was directed to complete the task of strengthening relevant ICAO provisions concerning language requirements. Member states agreed to take steps to ensure air traffic control (ATC) personnel and flight crews involved in flight operations in airspace where the use of the English language is required were proficient in conducting and comprehending radiotelephony communications in English. Since then, ICAO developed its English-Language Proficiency requirements (ELP) and urged its members to document their ELP test implementation plans by March 8, 2008. Until all ATC personnel and flight crews involved in flight operations obtain a passing level of ELP, the language-based problems international pilots face is not known. This report is a compilation of written responses and comments by a group of 48 U.S. pilots of their difficulties in international operations who met with interviewers to discuss their language experiences flying into countries where English may or may not be the local or national language among its radio operators, controllers, and pilots. In this report, the pilots' responses to questions 31-38 and their comments from discussions of those questions with interviewers are presented as a compiled narrative. The pilots' responses had nine major thrusts, among them the following: (1) Traveling into nonnative English-speaking countries can be a positive learning experience leading to professional growth and development; (2) English-language proficiency varies from country to country and individual to individual, however, problems occur everywhere; and (3) Hearing multiple languages on the radio restricts situational awareness and diminishes pilots' expectations as information derived from the party line decreases
Physiological equivalence of normobaric and hypobaric exposures of humans to 25,000 feet by David A Self ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 173 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"Introduction : Skepticism exists whether normobaric and hypobaric hypoxic exposures are equivalent. We have evaluated if physiological differences between the two environments would translate into actual differences in hypoxia symptoms. Methods : We exposed 20 subjects to 5-min 25,000 ft (7620 m) equivalent environments in an altitude chamber and then in a ground-level portable reduced-oxygen training enclosure (PROTE). Heart rate and hemoglobin oxygen saturation (SAO₂) were continuously monitored. Alveolar gas samples were collected at 1-, 3-, and 4-min elapsed time. Subjects completed hypoxia symptom questionnaires at the same time points. Results : Mean 4th min alveolar oxygen tension (P [subscript] AO₂), alveolar carbon dioxide tension (P [subscript] AO₂), and respiratory quotient (RQ) differed significantly between the chamber and PROTE. Declines in SAO₂ appeared biphasic, with steepest declines seen in the first minute. Rates of SAO₂ decline over the 5-min exposure were significantly different. Heart rate was not different, even when indexed to body surface area. Mean number of hypoxia symptoms between hypobaric and normobaric environments after 1 min were significant. However, the temporal pattern of symptom frequencies across subjects between the chamber and PROTE were similar. Conclusions : Alveolar gas composition, as well as arterial hemoglobin oxygen desaturation patterns, differed between a ground-level and hypobaric exposure. Differences in mean number of hypoxia symptoms between hypobaric and normobaric environments after 1 min, but not at 3 and 4 min, coupled with similar patterns in symptom frequencies, suggest that ground-level hypoxia training may be a sufficiently faithful surrogate for altitude chamber training."--Report documentation page
Performance criteria for development of extended use protective breathing equipment by Robert P Garner ( )
2 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 173 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires under Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) 121.337 that crew protective breathing equipment (PBE) for smoke and fume protection is installed aboard aircraft and that crewmembers be trained in the proper use of PBE (FAR 121.417). A variety of designs currently exist that meet the requirements of these regulations. However, the threat posed by atmospheric contamination in an environment that cannot be quickly escaped suggest that extending the protective capabilities of PBE devices beyond what is mandated by the FAA may be beneficial in aviation and other arenas. These experiments were conducted to evaluate the use of one style of PBE in terms of potential for long-term (>20 min) use and to identify issues critical to long-term use. A closed-circuit PBE device utilizing lithium hydroxide (LiOH) technology for carbon dioxide (CO2) removal was tested
Effects of video weather training products, web-based preflight weather briefing, and local vs. non-local pilots on general aviation pilot weather knowledge and flight behavior, phase 3 by William Knecht ( )
2 editions published in 2010 in English and held by 172 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"The primary purpose of Phases 1 and 2 of this research was to test the effects of video weather training products on weather related risk-taking. During the investigation, two unexpected observations were made: (1) Despite specific instructions to fly visual-flight-rules-only (VFR), nine of 50 Phase 1 pilots spent more than 10 min in simulated instrument meteorological conditions (IMC), plus three of those nine repeated that behavior in Phase 2; (2) Whole-group (N=50) weather knowledge test scores were significantly lower (19%, p<.001) than average FAA certification exam scores obtained by freshly licensed pilots, implying knowledge decay over time. To assess if any of the IMC violations were willful (rather than inadvertent), we sent a brief questionnaire to the nine pilots of interest. Five responded. After analysis, the leading explanation seemed that their flight profiles were consistent with preflight terrain avoidance planning (TAP). These pilots seemed determined to fly straight and level above the highest known obstacle, even if that obstacle was distant and TAP altitude meant flying initial VFR-into-IMC. The average group decline in certification exam scores was equally significant from a logical standpoint. Since knowledge retention tends to be a function of knowledge relevancy, if FAA test questions were uniformly relevant to real-world weather encounters, we would expect pilots' scores to increase with experience, not decrease. Since experience tends to increase with time, this should offset the normal decay process of forgetting. However, this study shows that it did not. This was consistent with pilot anecdotes that FAA test questions often seemed, to them, "trick questions," or otherwise based on tasks that pilots rarely do and conditions rarely encountered. This suggests ways to improve FAA exams: (1) Screen existing questions for real-world relevancy, eliminating those based solely on rote learning; (2) Scale the relative number of weather-test items to the relative hazard and/or encounter frequency of real-world weather types (dangerous and common weather types deserve relatively more test questions); (3) Computerize the testing procedure; (4) Require pilots to pass a certain percentage of weather questions. Critics may argue that the relatively small percentage of weather-related questions on any given exam could make the test hard to pass for some individuals due to sampling error. However, this could be addressed by computerized adaptive testing, which presents harder questions to a candidate after correct answers, and easier questions after incorrect answers. Computerized adaptive testing quickly homes in on a candidate's native ability level and self-terminates after reaching a preset reliability (e.g., 95%). Because adaptive tests tend to be more efficient (shorter and more reliable) than fixed-item tests, this would free up more testing time for weather-related items, making sampling error much less of a problem."--Report documentation page
 
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Alternative Names

controlled identity United States. Office of Aviation Medicine

United States. Aerospace Medicine, Office of
United States. Federal Aviation Administration. Office of Aerospace Medicine
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English (55)