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Caution and Warning Alarm Design and Evaluation for NASA CEV Auditory Displays

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The design of caution-warning signals for NASA’s Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) and other future spacecraft will be based on both best practices based on current research and evaluation of current alarms. A design approach is presented based upon cross-disciplinary examination of psychoacoustic research, human factors experience, aerospace practices, and acoustical engineering requirements. A listening test with thirteen participants was performed involving ranking and grading of current and newly developed caution-warning stimuli under three conditions: (1) alarm levels adjusted for compliance with ISO 7731, "Danger signals for work places – Auditory Danger Signals", (2) alarm levels adjusted to an overall 15 dBA s/n ratio and (3) simulated codec low-pass filtering. The resulting analyses include determination of sounds that were judged as inappropriate, independent of condition.

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