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Human Factors for Loran-C Receivers
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  • Abstract:
    Loran-C is an inexpensive, compact, and functionally powerful area navigation system.

    The application of this system to aeronautical navigation is an exciting occurrence for

    general aviation pilots. In the cockpit these systems simplify and increase the safety

    and precision of flight navigation by providing real time information on distance,

    bearing, and ground speed to pilot selectable navaids, airports, and air route intersec

    tions throughout the United States. Extensive data bases in these systems provide this

    information to pilots in response to a series of key presses and knob turns. Currently

    few receivers are certified for IFR flight, and none are currently certified for sole means

    of navigation under instrument flight rules. Used under VFR conditions or as backup

    systems to other navigation systems, the design of the display, control and logic of these

    systems is not as critical to flight safety as might otherwise be the case. When intended

    for use under the potentially unforgiving and often high workload conditions presented

    by instrument meteorological conditions, good human factors design is critical to safe


    This paper identifies current and potential human factors issues that are important in

    the design and operation of Loran-C receivers. The issues covered include display and

    control formatting, prompting for programming and function selection, error detection

    and correction, selection of emergency functions, warnings and alerts, cockpit location,

    and compatibility with air traffic control.

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