• eyetracking@ethz.ch

Author Archives: David Rudi

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Final project event – Enhanced flight training program for monitoring aircraft automation

On the 25th of November we presented the final results of our project entitled: “Enhanced flight training program for monitoring aircraft automation“.

The project was partially funded by the swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation (BAZL), was lead by SWISS International Airlines Ltd., and supported by Prof. Dr. Robert Mauro from the Department of Psychology (University of Oregon) and Dr. Immanuel Barshi from NASA Ames Research Center, Human Systems Integration Division (NASA).

As part of this very successful project we developed a system that provides instructors with more detailed insights concerning pilots’ attention during training flights, to specifically improve instructors’ assessment of pilot situation awareness.

Our project has recently been featured in different media. ETH News has published a throrough article on our project: Tracking the eye of the pilot and different articles have been referencing this publication. Additionally, there have been two Radio interviews with Prof. Dr. Martin Raubal at Radio Zürisee and SRF4 (both in German).

Moreover, there have been publications during the course of the project:

Rudi, D., Kiefer, P. & Raubal, M. (2019). The Instructor Assistant System (iASSYST) – Utilizing Eye Tracking for Aviation Training Purposes. Ergonomics. https://doi.org/10.1080/00140139.2019.1685132.

Rudi, D., Kiefer, P., Giannopoulos, I., & Raubal, M. (2019). Gaze-based interactions in the cockpit of the future – a survey. Journal on Multimodal User Interfaces. Springer. Retrieve from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12193-019-00309-8.

Rudi D., Kiefer P. & Raubal, M. (2018). Visualizing Pilot Eye Movements for Flight Instructors. In ETVIS ’18: 3rd Workshop on Eye Tracking and Visualization. ACM, New York, NY, USA, Article 7, 5 pages. http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/3205929.3205934. Best Paper Award Winner.


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Full paper published – Ergonomics Journal

Our paper “The instructor assistant system (iASSYST) – utilizing eye tracking for commercial aviation training purposes” has been published in the Ergonomics Journal:

Rudi, D., Kiefer, P., & Raubal, M. (2019). The instructor assistant system (iASSYST)-utilizing eye tracking for commercial aviation training purposes. Ergonomics.

Abstract. This work investigates the potential of providing commercial aviation flight instructors with an eye tracking enhanced observation system to support the training process. During training, instructors must deal with many parallel tasks, such as operating the flight simulator, acting as air traffic controllers, observing the pilots and taking notes. This can cause instructors to miss relevant information that is crucial for debriefing the pilots. To support instructors, the instructor ASsistant SYSTem (iASSYST) was developed. It includes video, audio, simulator and eye tracking recordings. iASSYST was evaluated in a study involving 7 instructors. The results show that with iASSYST, instructors were able to support their observations of errors, find new errors, determine that some previously identified errors were not errors, and to reclassify the types of errors that they had originally identified. Instructors agreed that eye tracking can help identifying causes of pilot error.


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ETAVI – 2nd Call for Papers

A quick reminder for the “1st International Workshop on Eye-Tracking in Aviation (ETAVI)” that is going to take place March 2019 in Toulouse, France.

The submission deadlines are:

  • Abstracts: 9th September 2019
  • Paper: 30th September 2019

Feel free to also forward the Call for Papers to any interested colleagues.

We look forward to seeing you there!


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Gaze-based interactions in the cockpit of the future: a survey

An article titled “Gaze-based interactions in the cockpit of the future: a survey” will appear in one of the next issues of the Journal on Multimodal User Interfaces. It is now available online:

Abstract Flying an aircraft is a mentally demanding task where pilots must process a vast amount of visual, auditory and vestibular information. They have to control the aircraft by pulling, pushing and turning different knobs and levers, while knowing that mistakes in doing so can have fatal outcomes. Therefore, attempts to improve and optimize these interactions should not increase pilots’ mental workload. By utilizing pilots’ visual attention, gaze-based interactions provide an unobtrusive solution to this. This research is the first to actively involve pilots in the exploration of gaze-based interactions in the cockpit. By distributing a survey among 20 active commercial aviation pilots working for an internationally operating airline, the paper investigates pilots’ perception and needs concerning gaze-based interactions. The results build the foundation for future research, because they not only reflect pilots’ attitudes towards this novel technology, but also provide an overview of situations in which pilots need gaze-based interactions.


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1st International Workshop on Eye Tracking in Aviation: Call for Papers

We’re glad to announce the 1st International Workshop on Eye Tracking in Aviation (ETAVI), which will take place March 17, 2020 in Toulouse, France.

The workshop aims to bring together researchers and practitioners who have a common interest in using eye tracking in the aviation domain including, but not limited to the cockpit and air traffic control / management.

The keynote will be given by Leonardo Di Stasi an assistant professor at the University of Granada (Spain) with an extensive research background in the field of Aviation and Eye Tracking.

The Call for Papers is now available (Paper submission deadline: September 30, 2019; Abstract submission deadline: September 9, 2019).


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Invited Talk at the Royal Aeronautical Society

On June 12th, our colleagues from Swiss International Air Lines Ltd. and we had the honor to present our project on “Enhanced flight training program for monitoring aircraft automation” at the Royal Aeronautical Society, and received a lot of positive feedback for our project.

This year, the Spring Conference of the Royal Aeronautical Society Flight Simulation Group was on “The Future Reality of Flight Simulation” and featured a number of very interesting talks (Programme).

We thank our hosts for having us and plan to visit next year’s event as well.


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ET4S – 2nd Call for Papers

A quick reminder for the “Eye Tracking for Spatial Research” event that is going to be a track at the “2019 ACM Symposium on Eye Tracking Research & Applications” (ETRA).

Feel free to also forward the Call for Papers to any interested colleagues.

We look forward to seeing you again!


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News Articles on “Awareness in Aviation” Project

Two news articles published about the “Awareness in Aviation” project (both in German).

One article, written by Dominik Haug for the Aeropers Rundschau, which can be found here: Eye-Tracking – das Auge im Blick.

Another article, written by Benjamin Weinmann for the Aargauer Zeitung, which can be found here.


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Best Paper at ETVIS 2018

We are happy to announce, that our paper received the best paper award at ETVIS!

David Rudi, Peter Kiefer, and Martin Raubal. 2018. Visualizing Pilot Eye Movements for Flight Instructors. In ETVIS’18: 3rdWorkshop on Eye Tracking and Visualization

The paper is part of the Awareness in Aviation project.


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Papers accepted at ETRA and ETVIS

We are happy to announce, that two of our papers have been accepted at ETRA and ETVIS.

Fabian Göbel, Peter Kiefer, Ioannis Giannopoulos, Andrew T. Duchowski, and Martin Raubal. 2018. Improving Map Reading with Gaze-Adaptive Legends. In ETRA ’18: 2018 Symposium on Eye Tracking Research & Applications

David Rudi, Peter Kiefer, and Martin Raubal. 2018. Visualizing Pilot Eye Movements for Flight Instructors. In ETVIS’18: 3rdWorkshop on Eye Tracking and Visualization

These papers are part of the IGAMaps and Awareness in Aviation projects.

Peter Kiefer has further been involved in ETRA as an Area Chair.


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SWISS Eye Tracking project @ Lufthansa Digital Aviation Forum 2017

This year together with our colleagues from SWISS International Air Lines Ltd., we were present at the Lufthansa Digital Aviation Forum 2017 in Frankfurt am Main to present our ongoing project. Visit: http://releasd.com/3583 and http://newsroom.lufthansagroup.com/de/themen/digital-aviation.html for further information on the Lufthansa Digital Aviation Forum 2017.


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SWISS project presentation

On the 28th of November Martin Raubal, Peter Kiefer and David Rudi from the GeoGazeLab co-hosted a project presentation of the “Awareness in Aviation” project in collaboration with SWISS International Air Lines Ltd.

During that event the project and its goals was first presented to a wider audience consisting of guests from SWISS International Air Lines Ltd., Swiss Aviation Training, the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation (BAZL) and journalists from different news journals. One of the journals was the “My SWISS” magazine, which recently published an article of the event.


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Full paper accepted at SUI 2016

David Rudi, Ioannis Giannopoulos, Peter Kiefer, Christian Peier, Martin Raubal (2016) Interacting with Maps on Optical Head-Mounted Displays. In Proceedings of the 4th ACM Symposium on Spatial User Interaction (SUI 2016). ACM, 2016


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Department Annual Report: Spatial Awareness

A research highlight on “Spatial Awareness in the cockpit” has been published in the annual report of the Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering!

David Rudi, Peter Kiefer, and Martin Raubal. Spatial awareness in the cockpit. Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering, ETH Zurich, Annual Report 2015, April 2016.

See also: Research on “Aviation Safety”