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Motor learning affects car-to-driver handover in automated vehicles

Vehicles in the foreseeable future will be required to transition between autonomous driving (without human involvement) and full human control. During this transition period, the human, who has not been actively engaged in the driving process, must resume the motor control necessary to steer the car. The in-car study presented here demonstrates that when human drivers are presented with a steering behavior that is different from the last time they were in control, specifically the ratio of hand wheel angle to road wheel angle (emulating a change in vehicle speed), they undergo a significant period of adaptation before they return to their previous steering behavior. How- ever, drivers do not require an adaptation period to return to previous driving behavior after changes in steering torque. These findings have implications for the design of vehicles that transition from automated to manual driving and for understanding of human motor control in real-world tasks.

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Publication Location

Science Robotics 1(1):eaah5682

Holly Russell
Selina Pan
J. Christian Gerdes
Ilana Nisky
Allison M Okamura
Publication Date
December, 2016