Captain Shem Malmquist is currently a B777 Captain operating international routes. His broad experience ranges from teaching aerobatics and instructing in a wide variety of both general aviation and transport aircraft to academic research and safety investigation. His most recent work has involved approaches to risk analysis and accident prevention utilizing MIT’s System Theoretic Accident Models and Processes (STAMP).
Captain Malmquist’s education includes a Masters (MSc) degree in Human Factors in Aeronautics through the Florida Institute of Technology, a Bachelors of Science (BSc) from Embry-Riddle University, and an Associate of Science (ASc) through Mt. San Antonio College.
He is an elected Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, a full member of ISASI, and a member of the Resilience Engineering Association, AIAA, the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, IEEE, the Flight Safety Foundation and SAE where he also serves as a voting member of the Flight Deck and Handling Quality Standards for Transport Aircraft committee and is a member of the Aerospace Behavior Engineering Technology and the Lithium Battery Packaging Performance Committees.
Training to Facilitate Adaptive Capacity in Automated Systems
While automation has often been touted as the source of the improvements in aviation safety during the past 30 years, evidence shows that the improvements are more likely due to better component reliability resulting in fewer unusual problems. The unfortunate side effect of this increase in component reliability is that pilots today have less exposure to unusual circumstances outside of the well-defined and scripted problems in training scenarios. The high reliability has masked a potentially dangerous mix. Less exposure to real-world complex problems reduces our ability to find ways to cope with unexpected problems. Simultaneous to this, the modern aircraft include integrated modular avionic systems that can result in cascading and often very confusing failure scenarios, accompanied by even more confusing alerts. Despite this, training of many skill sets continues to be reduced such that pilots are no longer well versed in understanding aerodynamic principles, their aircraft systems, to include advanced flight control systems and the hidden traps in automated weather avoidance systems such as multi-scan radars. Meteorology, never well trained, continues to be mostly ignored. While more senior pilots may still retain skill sets to overcome the reduction in exposure to complex problems, they are leaving the industry through attrition and the newer generation has no way to obtain the skill sets necessary to manage complex failures on their own. Utilizing MIT’s System Theoretic Process Analysis (STPA), this presentation provides some insights into how we might modify our current training to improve pilot adaptive capacity while utilizing the current technology, as well as explore how we might design future automated systems to better utilize human skill sets.