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Features May 2013 Issue

Automation Awry

Who doesn’t love a fancy panel? They can save you time, simplify your life, enhance safety or, sometimes divert your attention from the primary task at hand.

An increasing amount of instrument flying is done using technologically advanced airplanes and sophisticated avionics. Correct use of automation improves safety immensely by giving pilots the time to monitor systems, gather information, and plan ahead. But researchers have found that as a group we do not use automation effectively. Automation presents additional challenges. Over reliance or incorrect use can quickly get us in trouble. To take advantage of the benefits of automation, a pilot must…

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