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Mental workload in a moving helicopter simulation : an analysis using near-infraRed spectroscopy in a moving environment.

Zijlstra, Joost (2019) Mental workload in a moving helicopter simulation : an analysis using near-infraRed spectroscopy in a moving environment.

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Abstract:Near-Infrared Spectrosopy or NIRS shows promise as an alternative to mainstream neuroimaging techniques. As this technique is based on light instead of electromagnetic signals and does not require a person to lie still in a machine, such as with mainstream methods like EEG or PET, it can prove especially useful for situations where a person is exposed to motion from the environment, such as in a helicopter. To assess how well NIRS can measure neural correlates of mental workload (MWL), an EEG-cap with NIRS optodes was placed over different regions of the frontal cortex. A moving-base simulator was used to simulate the environment of a moving helicopter. Participants completed a simulated helicopter flying task in either clear weather for a reference state for MWL, or with wind and fog, for increased MWL. These MWL manipulations were performed both with a moving simulator and with the simulator’s movement turned off, to catch potential differences. Interestingly, there were indications that NIRS was able to detect differences in neural activation during the task. While it was not verified that these differences were MWL-related, detecting these differences could be used to encourage research into the possibility of using NIRS as an ‘online’ measurement technique. The experiment did not find the expected neural correlates, related to the manipulation of MWL. Possibly, because these occurred in an area where no optodes were placed, or the task did not elicit enough change in MWL to measure with NIRS.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/79535
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