We have expertise in the use of Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) to generate data-driven system requirements for a variety of projects. Through the statistical analysis of data provided by Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) via interviews, surveys, questionnaires, and task observation, CSAOB researchers have developed a replicable CTA protocol which can be tailored to identify the strengths and weaknesses for both existing and proposed systems.

CSAOB researchers provided expertise in CTA for a NASA Engineering Safety Center (NESC) project to develop data-driven requirements for the Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) Launch Termination System (LTS). Observations of WFF Range Safety Officers interacting with the safety-critical Range Data Display System (RDDS) for launches (both real-time and simulated) were used to perform heuristic analyses of the current LTS and its limitations. A series of SME interviews and detailed questionnaires identified current and future system needs. Through statistical analysis of the collected data, CSAOB researchers generated a series of robust system requirements which will provide the blueprint for a new LTS capable of meeting current and future launch needs.

This expertise in CTA is currently being utilized to support the Multi-model Ensemble Risk Assessment (MERA) Project for HRP’s Space Radiation Element. The purpose of this research effort is to improve communication, and thus understanding, of space radiation risks and probabilistic risk model projections, including the underlying statistical methods and assessments.

CSAOB Researchers are currently conducting interviews with JSC Flight Surgeons and have distributed questionnaires to retired NASA astronauts to better understand radiation risk communication needs (past, present, and future). Once data collection is complete, statistical analyses will be applied to generate data-driven system requirements for future space radiation risk modeling software which will aid in both risk communication and future mission planning.

Selected Publications

Daiker, R., Harrivel A., Ghatas, R., Lake, R., & Maddock, S., “Cognitive Task Analysis and Knowledge Elicitation to inform Medical Workstation Design for Long Duration Space Missions”, Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics Conference 2020, July 2020.

Daiker, R., Ghatas, R., & Vincent, M., “A Cognitive Task Analysis of Safety-Critical Launch Termination Systems”, Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics Conference 2018, July 2018.

Technical Points of Contact

Rania Ghatas, Crew Systems and Aviation Operations Branch, NASA Langley Research Center

Ron Daiker, Crew Systems and Aviation Operations Branch, NASA Langley Research Center

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