Date of Award

Fall 2011

Access Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Human Factors & Systems


Human Factors and Systems

Committee Chair

Shawn Doherty, Ph.D.

First Committee Member

Dahai Liu, Ph.D.

Second Committee Member

Ted Beneigh, Ph.D.


As technology rapidly advances and our imagination is no longer fantasy but instead reality, the aviation community needs to concentrate on the harsh truth of airspace safety. In the situation of integrating unmanned aerial systems (UASs) into the National airspace, UASs outside of terminal areas would generally be permitted to fly their preferred routes, and self-separate, with minimal intervention from air traffic control. From an air traffic control perspective, the integration could raise a number of human performance problems including workload extremes and passive-monitoring demands. One fundamental requirement for operation in the National Air Space is to preserve the safety of the general public. This paper describes an experimental evaluation of the effect different levels of UAS intent information has on air traffic controller workload. The simulation specifically manipulates intent sharing, that is, whether unmanned aerial vehicles provided advance notice of their intended maneuvers. The Effects on air traffic controller workload when control capability is altered were also explored.