The Future of Human Factors in Aviation

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The Future of Human Factors in Aviation The International Ergonomics Association (2000) defines human factors: The scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data, and other methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance. The science of human factors in aviation has a come along way since the days of the Wright brothers in 1913 but it did not actually start with them. According to Dr. Bill Johnson, Chief Scientist at the Federal Aviation Administration, human factors “dates back to the 1600s when Leonardo da Vinci drew the Vitruvian Man, with all the anthropometric measures, [when] he was trying to decide if a human was strong enough to propel an aircraft” (FAA, 2012). Long after the work of da Vinci, human factors has brought advancements to aircraft design while creating a greater understanding of the human role in mishaps. Brief History of Human Factors Long after Leonardo da Vinci, human factors research originated with aviation (Salas et al., 2010). Once the pioneers of aviation began taking to the air, the quest for safety and efficiency began with an ever-increasing fervor. Aviation accidents have long been viewed as spectacular and with the spectacle of an accident comes the public outcry over safety. While not all human factors research deals with accidents, the majority of money put into the
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