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Sunday, 9 March 2014

Human Performance and Limitations

Every aviation incident has Human Factors as at least one of their root causes. So a lot of research has been put in that subject over the last few decades. Human Performance on the one side, but espacially the limitations. Man was not meant to fly, so we are taking man out of their natural environment, yet still expect them to perform above and beyond what is expected "on the ground". One of those limitations is the amount of information that can be processed. It has been demonstrated that the human brain, when overloaded with information, goes into "survival mode", where only the information that is perceived as essential for survival is processed, and the remainder is "parked" in short term memory, only to be collected again after the essential information pool is processed. Short Term memory has a limited shelf life, so it is well possible that information that is not perceived as essential, is not processed at all.
Now this is all well and understandable, but how does that affect me, the (student) pilot? Surely this will be applicable in a crisis situation, but even then ... I know what to do when things go wrong, so it won't happen to me, right?. Well, I can tell you this: you're WRONG!!!