Investigation: Visual Display Alternatives for Infantry Soldiers – A Literature Review

Étude: Solutions de Rechange pour les Afficheurs des Fantassins – Revue de la Littérature


  1. Bos, J.C.
  2. Tack, D.W.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Toronto, Toronto ONT (CAN);Humansystems Inc, Guelph ONT (CAN)
The purpose of this investigation was to conduct a literature review of the usability of visual display alternatives and emerging technologies, with particular emphasis on dismounted infantry applications. Seven types of visual displays are classified into categories and systematically evaluated according to results and analyses reported in the human factors literature. Rating criteria included attentional demands, visual demands, performance measures, and compatibility and field use. In the first section of this report, visual displays are classified according to form factor, which refers to the physical design of the display. The second section of the report evaluates the specific types of hand-held and head-mounted displays. The final section of this report further evaluates head-mounted displays according to ergonomic issues including transparency, light source, colour depth, refresh rate, and field of view. Outcomes of the investigation indicate that the choice of computer display for dismounted infantry must consider the operational tasks performed within a dismounted infantry section as well as planning tasks that are only performed by the Section Commander. The head-mounted display form factor has advantages over the hand-held displays when used by soldiers engaged in target detection and engagement, off-bore surveillance, wayfinding, and tactical movement. Conversely, the hand-held display seems to be more suitable for Commander tasks involving complex graphics (e.g.

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Soldier Information Requirements Technology Demonstration Project;SIREQ TD;visual display;head-mounted display;field of view;mission planing;usability;human factors
Report Number
DRDC-TORONTO-CR-2005-027 — Contractor Report
Date of publication
01 Jul 2005
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

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