Fatal accidents in complex system, as military and civil aviation, generally occur through the accumulation of multiple factors (including pilot fatigue or overload). Even though these accidents are rare – one accident per one million of aircraft take-offs -, it is universally agreed that 80 percent of aviation incidents (defined as an occurrence, other than an accident, associated with specific procedures that affect the operation safety) involves human factors. The human dimension is the determinant factor in producing and, in turn, avoiding potential hazards. Military aviators are required to perform long and continuous daytime/nighttime operations to gain a tactical advantage over the enemy, and have to face very complex situations (including emergencies) at any time. Thus, the development of non-invasive methods to monitor and detect fatigue and/or cognitive overload in soldiers, and, thus, prevent catastrophic outcomes in operational environments, is an area of great interest to our society.
We work to optimize soldier performance, improving aviation safety and training protocols. Our research focuses on integrating brain activity and gaze behavior, as well as other psychophysiological indices, during real and simulated military flights to assess the aviator’s fitness-for- duty.
Diaz-Piedra, C., Rieiro, H., Suárez, J., Rios-Tejada, F., Catena, A., & Di Stasi, L.L. (2016). Fatigue in the military: towards a fatigue detection test based on the saccadic velocity. Physiological measurement, 37, N62-N75.
Di Stasi, L.L., McCamy, M. B., Martinez-Conde, S., Gayles, E., Hoare, C., Foster, M., … & Macknik, S.L. (2016). Effects of long and short simulated flights on the saccadic eye movement velocity of aviators. Physiology & behavior, 153, 91-96.
Di Stasi, L.L., Diaz‐Piedra, C., Suárez, J., McCamy, M.B., Martinez‐Conde, S., Roca‐Dorda, J., & Catena, A. (2015). Task complexity modulates pilot electroencephalographic activity during real flights. Psychophysiology, 52, 951-956.
Di Stasi, L.L., Cabestrero, R., McCamy, M.B., Ríos, F., Catena, A., Quirós, P., … & Martinez‐Conde, S. (2014). Intersaccadic drift velocity is sensitive to short‐term hypobaric hypoxia. European Journal of Neuroscience, 39, 1384-1390.
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