Human Factors in Aerospace
The successful return of Dragon Endeavor marks the first U.S. splashdown in over 4 decades since the Apollo program. This has been a monumental feat, for both commercial contractors and the nation, as it is also the first vehicle to launch from U.S. soil in 9 years, since the retirement of Shuttle.
Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302.
Lion Air Flight 610.
Two Boeing 737 Max 8 airplanes.
346 lives lost.
As human factors experts in flight safety, we’ve been pouring over the seemingly endless amount of daily news stories concerning these tragedies. And what we’ve discovered is this: If there was ever a case study to show exactly how human centered design could have saved lives, this is it.
The United States is currently the global leader in science and technology. However, if you walk into any airport here these days, you may roll your eyes at this statement. You are not alone. Notable figures such as Former Vice President Biden have also spoken publicly about the sorry state of our airport design.
To handle an increased production rate of 47 jets per month (up from 42), Boeing proudly promotes their new automated assembly lines in its Renton factory. Vice president and general manager Keith Leverkuhn spoke enthusiastically about the future of aviation technology, mentioning upcoming MAX 9 and possibly MAX 10 models that would seat 199+ passengers. The future was looking very bright, but would it be safe.