UNDERSTANDING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF NIGHT VISION GOGGLES IN NIGHTTIME DISMOUNTED TERRAIN TRAVERSE
Ho, G.W. and Tang, P.C., Defence Research and Development Canada Toronto, Canada
Night Vision Goggles (NVGs) have profoundly modified the way the Canadian Forces conduct nighttime operations. The aim of this study is to identify NVG constructs (i.e., properties or concepts used by an individual in evaluating NVGs) that affect the overall effectiveness of NVGs in Dismounted Terrain Traverse operations, to assist in the development of human factors (i.e., design and performance) specifications for NVG systems. Based on George Kelly's Personal Construct Theory, the Repertory Grid technique allows soldiers to generate their own constructs relating to NVG effectiveness, that are free from the influence of other subject matter experts. Testing was done in two phases. Phase one involved using the repertory grid as an exploratory tool on 6 senior non-commissioned officers with extensive hands-on NVG experience to elicit core NVG constructs. Phase two, the validation phase, involved 25 junior ranks in a repeated measures experiment with 4 prototype NVGs, using the repertory grid to confirm and enhance the relational patterns among the NVG constructs identified in phase one. Cluster analysis indicated two meaningful NVG construct clusters, which have been labeled Functionality and Usability. The membership components of these two clusters provide a better understanding of what is affecting the effectiveness of NVGs use. In addition, singular value decomposition biplot analysis revealed interesting trends pertaining to NVG design considerations, which could lead to enhanced capabilities in future military equipment and thus operations.