Realising the Benefit of Augmented Reality (AR) Devices in Military Applications

Project Summary

While Augmented Reality (AR) activities are increasingly important, there are certain key problems that limit the effectiveness of the technology. For example, 30-40% of the population are stereo blind, yet AR relies on stereo vision. There are open questions concerning how the conflict between AR demands and natural viewing impact spatial attention and cognitive performance, especially under fatigue.

The research for this project was supported by simulation and modelling to understand risks and identify ways of realising enhanced capabilities through development of a prototype adaptive AR interface.

Project Outcomes

This project investigated the effects of compromised stereo vision and fatigue on performance of tasks in virtual reality (used to mimic augmented reality).

The project team developed a methodology to quantify how compromised stereo vision might impact performance for AR based tasks, when rested and under fatigue. This included continuous measurement of behaviour including eye movements and performance on cognitive tasks.

The results indicate that compromised stereo under fatigue does impact performance. Participants with low stereo showed systematic differences compared to those with “normal” stereo. Participants with low stereo had lower Subjective Sleep Quality ratings under fatigue, lower workload and more variable eye movement metrics. Interestingly, they also responded differently to fatigue for target detection during different modes of control.

More work is needed to understand how compromised stereo impacts performance and how it changes over time.

Further work could also be undertaken to develop a working prototype of a HMI that could be re-configured depending on the operator’s capabilities (for example, under fatigue and/or compromised stereo) and demands of the environment.

Team came together, with members having worked with each other previously in various ways from newer collaborations of 1 year to long lasting ones of 20+ years.
May 2018
Project secures DIP Funding
June 2018
DIP Project commences
September 2019
DIP project complete
A/Prof Anna Ma-Wyatt and Prof Siobhan Banks, along with colleagues at the University of Adelaide, UniSA and Flinders University, submit an application for a joint International Research Lab (CROSSING) with CNRS and Naval Group. The topic of the lab is on human-autonomy teaming. A/Prof Anna Ma-Wyatt appointed co-Director of the IRL.
Prof Mike Nicholls and Dr Oren Griffiths (Flinders University) and Dr Toby Loetscher (UniSA) awarded a HPRnet project titled 'Helped, not hindered: Optimising the use of augmented reality by Defence personnel'.
A/Prof Troy Visser, Prof David Badcock, Dr Jason Bell & Dr Vanessa Bowden. 'Hybrid approaches to evaluating the effectiveness of battlefield displays and augmented reality systems for the dismounted combatant'. Defence Science Partnership.
2020: A/Prof Anna Ma-Wyatt, Prof Lang White (University of Adelaide) and Dr Justin Fidock (DST) awarded a grant through the Intelligent Decision Superiority Network/Next Generation Technologies Fund call, for a project titled 'Human-AI interaction: a dialogue theory approach'.
A/Prof Anna Ma-Wyatt, A/Prof Dominic Thewlis, Mr Steve Cook and A/Prof Edward Palmer (all University of Adelaide) awarded a grant from DST to study how use of information systems impacts interaction with the environment.
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