The effects of age and physical exercise on multimodal signal responses: Implications for semi-autonomous vehicle takeover requests
The present study examined whether the non-chronological age factor, engagement in physical exercise, affected responses to multimodal (combinations of visual, auditory, and/or tactile) signals differently between younger and older adults in complex environments. Forty-eight younger and older adults were divided into exercise and non-exercise groups, and rode in a simulated Level 3 autonomous vehicle under four different task conditions (baseline, video watching, headway estimation, and video-headway combination), while being asked to respond to various multimodal warning signals. Overall, bi- and trimodal warnings had faster response times for both age groups across driving conditions, but was more pronounced for older adults. Engagement in physical exercise was associated with smaller maximum braking force for younger participants only, and also corresponded to longer average fixation durations, compared to the non-exercise group. Findings from this research can help to guide decisions about the design of warning and information systems for semi-autonomous vehicles.
National Science Foundation
Aging, Multimodal information presentation, Physical exercise
Industrial and Systems Engineering
Gaojian Huang and Brandon J. Pitts. "The effects of age and physical exercise on multimodal signal responses: Implications for semi-autonomous vehicle takeover requests" Applied Ergonomics (2022). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apergo.2021.103595