A comparative survey of the utility of cross-cockpit linkages and autoflight systems' backfeed to the control inceptors of commercial aircraft

Edmund Field, Don Harris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)


'Fly-by-wire' (FBW) electronic flight control systems in modern commercial aircraft have removed the requirement for the primary control inceptors in the cockpit to have a cross-cockpit linkage, and also for them to be back-driven from the autoflight systems. This comparative survey of 157 commercial pilots with current type ratings on either an FBW aircraft or a conventional technology aircraft, however, suggests that the deletion of these linkages may have degraded the lines of communication in the cockpit, both between the pilots and between the pilot and the aircraft. It is argued that this may adversely affect a pilot's situation awareness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1462-1477
Number of pages16
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1998
Externally publishedYes



  • Aviation
  • Cockpit design
  • Communication
  • Control design
  • Human-machine interface

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation

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