Journal of Aviation/Aerospace Education & Research





Key words

alpha band, beta band, brain, cognitive performance, delta band, electroencephalography, pilot, suborbital flight, theta band


Mental workload can be assessed using electrophysiological measures of brain activity, such as electroencephalography (EEG). EEG signals reveal cortical electrical activity. This cortical activity was recorded using specialized headsets. The focus of this research was to study cognitive performance (CP) in four pilots during simulated suborbital flights under nominal day and night profiles and under contingency day and night profiles. A 14-channel EMOTIV EEG headset measured the participants' brain activity while they flew simulated flights in a Suborbital Spaceflight Simulator (SSFS). Several sessions of EEG data were recorded from each subject, and feature extraction was applied. Data revealed that real-time pilot CP can be decoded from the EEG signals. If these data can be transmitted to mission control under operational conditions, they may be used to monitor pilot safety and performance.



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