NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-2 X13.01-8449
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Space Human Factors Assessment Tools
PROPOSAL TITLE: CogGauge (A Cognitive Assessment Tool)

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Design Interactive, Inc.
1221 E. Broadway, Suite 110
Oviedo, FL 32765 - 7829
(407) 706-0977

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ali Ahmad
1221 E. Broadway, Suite 110
Oviedo, FL 32765 - 7829
(407) 706-0977

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 4 to 5

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The Cognitive Gauge (CogGauge) tool aims to develop a portable gaming application that assesses cognitive state of astronaut crew members with the goal of determining probable causes of observed cognitive deficits. CogGauge, while engaging astronauts in an entertaining experience, combines predictive tools for assessing cognitive workload with metrics that assess performance decrements. CogGauge uses a hybrid approach combining predictive workload values with behavioral/performance-based workload assessment across a number of task difficulty levels. This comprehensive approach takes into consideration learning effects across a number of cognitive tasks (i.e., mini-games in the gaming context) and derives assessment of performance decrements related to cognitive deficits to identify probable causes of cognitive decrement. Feedback from CogGauge may be provided to astronauts and/or flight surgeons to determine impact on space flight and missions.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
CogGauge, once developed, forms a foundation for several potential tools for use within NASA. For example, the underlying framework that utilizes a combination of predictive workload and performance/behavioral measures can be used to build several tools that could be integrated within shuttle (or its future replacements) controls to assess astronaut cognitive workload during a mission. Another possible expansion is to assess ground operations centers workload while monitoring a mission progress. In essence, the concepts/approach implemented in CogGauge could potentially expand to several applications within NASA that involve intense human-system integration.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
In terms of other government and commercial markets, CogGauge could be potentially tailored for use by aircraft pilots to assess their cognitive workload before/after long flying hours. In many situations, the approach/algorithms implemented in CogGauge could be used to model an operator interacting with a complex system, such as Command and Control, Power Plant Control Units, Nursing Stations, and so on. In today's net-centric work environment, operators are required to consume multiple streams of data simultaneously from several monitor stations, which can lead to issues of cognitive overload, decreased performance, and loss of situation awareness. CogGauge could be adapted to monitor operator workload in real-time and drive potential adaptations to displays/task demands to minimize times of overload. Such an extension of CogGauge may be useful in domains such as airport security checkpoints, customs, police stations, etc.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Biomedical and Life Support
Human-Computer Interfaces
Portable Data Acquisition or Analysis Tools

Form Generated on 10-23-08 13:36