Aviation Flight Science
Management & Operations
Automation in Aviation
Human error in aviation cockpits has been a cause for major aviation accidents worldwide. Many methods and strategies are currently in place to target human error however, there are still many solutions to be found. Major aircraft manufacturers are re-designing cockpits for pilots to eliminate specific factors that may distract the pilot. Airlines, corporate companies, and military personnel are currently implementing new training procedures, checklists, and simulator emergencies that will train them to deal with unexpected situations. These processes have established positive feedback with pilots and operators however, these factors are not entirely eliminated.
The aviation industry is currently dealing with an issue regarding pilot input leading to catastrophic accidents. As accidents continue to occur, solutions to this matter are needed. As the aviation industry continues to soar, the demand for new pilots is growing. Therefore, new training programs are needed to teach rookie pilots human error mistakes can result in danger to the passengers they are carrying. These programs will allow for a safer mode of transportation for future travelers. Aviation safety is key for this industry and a solution to this issue needs to be reached.
Solutions to this issue and how to address it are being addressed on a consistent basis to eliminate this issue. Aviation requires many jobs working together to complete a task. For pilots, this interaction between each other is known as crew resource management (CRM). Crew resource management was first introduced when an accident occurred in 1978 when an airline passenger jet crashed after the crew had lost situational awareness of the emergency. This would later shift the focus to psychological concern in the cockpit. Admitting to an error when flying is crucial as it is the first step to a proactive approach to the incident. A perfect flight is not likely however, but striving for the best flight will allow for smaller errors and manageable. These errors are successfully managed by CRM training, which is well thought-out and strategically set in place for the operation. As of 2004, the Federal Aviation Administration has placed outlines of CRM training for commercial airlines to use in their standard operating procedures. Presently, CRM involves person-machine interface, appropriate information, leadership, team formation, problem solving, and decision making in the cockpit. CRM training requires communication skills which will allow pilots to understand the effectiveness of this method.
Not one solution can be the ultimate change to this issue. However, it is the constant adaption to new and improved technology that will ultimately determine how to combat the increased automation issues. At Western Michigan University’s College of Aviation, we gain first hand experience of just how advanced aircraft have become. However, it is how we adapt and perform with autopilot that determines how we will perform in a commercial aspect.