Int. J. of Industrial and Systems Engineering   »   2006 Vol.1, No.4

 

 

Title: In loco intellegentia: human factors for the future European train driver

 

Author: Mark S. Young, Neville A. Stanton, Guy H. Walker

 

Addresses:
School of Engineering and Design, Brunel University, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3PH, UK.
School of Engineering and Design, Brunel University, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3PH, UK.
School of Engineering and Design, Brunel University, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3PH, UK

 

Abstract: The European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS) represents a step change in technology for rail operations in Europe. It comprises track-to-train communications and intelligent on-board systems providing an unprecedented degree of support to the train driver. ERTMS is designed to improve safety, capacity and performance, as well as facilitating interoperability across the European rail network. In many ways, particularly from the human factors perspective, ERTMS has parallels with automation concepts in the aviation and automotive industries. Lessons learned from both these industries are that such a technology raises a number of human factors issues associated with train driving and operations. The interaction amongst intelligent agents throughout the system must be effectively coordinated to ensure that the strategic benefits of ERTMS are realised. This paper discusses the psychology behind some of these key issues, such as Mental Workload (MWL), interface design, user information requirements, transitions and migration and communications. Relevant experience in aviation and vehicle automation is drawn upon to give an overview of the human factors challenges facing the UK rail industry in implementing ERTMS technology. By anticipating and defining these challenges before the technology is implemented, it is hoped that a proactive and structured programme of research can be planned to meet them.

 

Keywords: train driving; human factors; automation; mental workload; interface design; communications; Europe; rail traffic management; ERTMS.

 

DOI: 10.1504/IJISE.2006.010388

 

Int. J. of Industrial and Systems Engineering, 2006 Vol.1, No.4, pp.485 - 501

 

Available online: 18 Jul 2006

 

 

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