The Human Systems Laboratory (formerly the Man Vehicle Laboratory) optimizes human-vehicle system safety and effectiveness by improving understanding of human physiological and cognitive capabilities, and developing appropriate countermeasures and evidence-based engineering design criteria. Research is interdisciplinary, and uses techniques from manual and supervisory control, signal processing, estimation, sensory-motor physiology, sensory and cognitive psychology, biomechanics, human factor engineering, artificial intelligence, and biostatistics. HSL has flown experiments on Space Shuttle Spacelab missions and parabolic flights, and has several flight experiments in development for the International Space Station. NASA, the National Space Biomedical Research Institute, and the FAA sponsor ground-based research. Projects focus on advanced space suit design and dynamics of astronaut motion, adaptation to rotating artificial gravity environments, spatial disorientation and navigation, teleoperation, design of aircraft and spacecraft displays and controls and cockpit human factors. Annual HSL MIT Independent Activities Period activities include ski safety research, and an introductory course on Boeing 767 systems and automation. MVL faculty also teach subjects in human factors engineering, space systems engineering, space policy, flight simulation, space physiology, aerospace biomedical and life support engineering, and the physiology of human spatial orientation.
Human Systems Laboratory