ARTS IIIA terminal baseline research report

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Authors: Kenneth Allendoerfer, PhD.
Joseph Galushka
Richard H. Mogford

Mogford, R. H., Allendoerfer, K. R., & Galushka, J. (1999). ARTS IIIA terminal baseline research report (DOT/FAA/CT-TN99/7). Atlantic City International Airport: Federal Aviation Administration William J. Hughes Technical Center.


This report provides baseline measurements on the Automated Radar Terminal System (ARTS) IIIA. Researchers developed a set of measurements useful for evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of terminal air traffic control automation systems. These measurements followed six high-level operational constructs: Safety, Capacity, Performance, Workload, Usability, and Simulation Fidelity. To collect these measurements for the ARTS IIIA, we conducted an air traffic control simulation using four sectors of Boston Terminal Radar Approach Control (TRACON) airspace with a traffic volume representing a 90th percentile day. Twelve controllers from Boston TRACON served as participants in the 3-week study. Recordings from the Target Generation Facility and Continuous Data Recording (CDR) systems provided objective data for measures such as the average number of aircraft controlled and the average number of data entries. Questionnaires and expert observer rating forms provided subjective data for measures such as the average controller workload and controller performance. This report provides statistics at several levels of specificity: aggregated across all sectors and runway configurations, by individual sector and runway configuration, and by 15-min intervals. Data from the study are intended to provide a meaningful representation of the TRACON controller position. We provide guidance on using these baseline measurements to examine the effectiveness and efficiency of future terminal automation systems. This guidance includes recommendations for merging quantitative statistics with controller opinion. We also include recommendations regarding the appropriate and inappropriate use of these data.

Updated: May 04, 2012 11:21 AM