Mission Displays for Autonomous Systems (MiDAS)

Period of Performance: 08/01/2005 - 05/31/2006


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Aptima, Inc.
12 Gill Street Array
Woburn, MA 01801
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Iowa
2 Gilmore Hall
Iowa City, IA 52242
Institution POC


We propose producing the MiDAS (Mission Displays for Autonomous Systems) interface designed to exploit existing automation capabilities of unmanned vehicles and improve future user interfaces in unmanned vehicles using an automated control system. Our technical approach features an innovative concept: using a Cognitive Work Analysis (CWA) approach to provide the structure for our design of the MiDAS interface so that it is invariant across different types of unmanned vehicles. This analysis would include an assessment of existing automation technologies for unmanned vehicle systems in order to map those parameters of human decision-making to data input requirements and data output capabilities of developed automation technologies. Phase I will consist of four tasks: 1) a Cognitive Work Analysis of the IA system interface; 2) a definition of the UxV operator requirements; 3) a prototype MiDAS interface design; 4) evaluation of the MiDAS interface, and 5) a plan to apply multi-modality to the UI (option task). In Phase II, the prototype MiDAS interface will be further developed for functioning in a more dynamic and unstructured environment, and integrated into a medium-fidelity simulation environment coupled with sufficient autonomy components to evaluate its functioning.