48313: Research Assistant Computer Science, Human Factors, Aviation or similar - Sonification in Air Traffic Control

German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Braunschweig, Germany

Work group:

Institute of Flight Guidance



Area of research:

Other,PHD Thesis



Part-Time Suitability:

The position is suitable for part-time employment.



Job description:


The Institute of Flight Guidance analyses various questions concerning highly automated air traffic controller workstations with different sensory modalities. As the visual channel of the controller for acquiring display information is often already at the limit of its capacity, the use of the auditory channel is intended to provide relief.
Monitoring of the traffic situation and the estimation of future conditions is essential for the controller. However, this requires attention at the right time and at the right spot of controller displays. In the future, the controller’s attention should be smoothly directed by using dynamically composed sound sequences. In the case of highly automated systems, the sound sequence may allow attention to be directed towards possible problem areas even in the case of strong distraction.
With the system to be developed, the current situation as well as possible courses of action can be presented in a musical – melodic – way. Thereby, the current distribution of attention respectively the attention focus of the operator should be taken into consideration for a non-intrusive attention control. By improving the operator’s situational awareness, the efficiency of the traffic management system is also increased.


Your doctorate includes the following tasks derived from this:


familiarization with the theoretical principles of human-machine interfaces (HMIs) with focus on the auditory channel (psychological, system-ergonomic, technical, and informatics aspects) and the analysis of existing HMIs, familiarization with the basics of Air Traffic Control creation of a sonification concept for the dynamic sounding of the current aviation situation and options for action as well as for auditory attention control implementation of the sonification concept preparation and implementation of a human-in-the-loop simulation study for validation of the concept summary of the results, writing the dissertation

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: 48313