Eye-tracking heatmap, displaying visual attention distribution, at the Full Mission Bridge Simulator

Understanding and optimising human operator performance

The maritime domain covers a huge variety of operations, from 400 m plus size container vessels to fast rigid hull inflatable boats to inland barges and gas carriers. However, there is one common factor in all of these operations: the human operator plays a vital role in making the operation effective and safe.

W Hans Huisman,

Wendie Uitterhoeve & Colin Guiking

18 report

hen a new type of operation is developed or an existing operation is changed by adding new

technology for instance, it is vital to ensure that the human operators are able to perform their future tasks effectively.

MARIN supports a human-centred design approach for operations - meaning that the human element is taken into account from the very start of the concept definition phase, up to the moment the operation is executed. In many cases the human operator is seen as the cause of an incident, but far more often the operator saved the day by taking actions in unforeseen and unpredictable situations. A well-designed operation can make the human element the strongest link in the chain, but at the same time, a bad design can also make it the weakest link.

Human-centred design A human- centred design approach starts by defining the task of the operator and his or her responsibilities in an operation. Who are the team members to cooperate with, which technology is available to support him and which actions can he take? Which goals should be achieved? These questions are important to answer in order to define user requirements in an early (concept) stage in the development lifecycle of a new ship, maritime system or, in the broadest sense, a future operation. Well-defined user requirements are necessary for a system design able to cover all the functionalities of a future operation. Including (potential) end-users in the development process allows the design team to get early input from an operational point of view, thereby avoiding incorrect assumptions. Developing

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