Methods for multiloop identification of visual and neuromuscular pilot responses

Mario Olivari, Frank M. Nieuwenhuizen, Joost Venrooij, Heinrich H. Bulthoff, Lorenzo Pollini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, identification methods are proposed to estimate the neuromuscular and visual responses of a multiloop pilot model. A conventional and widely used technique for simultaneous identification of the neuromuscular and visual systems makes use of cross-spectral density estimates. This paper shows that this technique requires a specific noninterference hypothesis, often implicitly assumed, that may be difficult to meet during actual experimental designs. A mathematical justification of the necessity of the noninterference hypothesis is given. Furthermore, two methods are proposed that do not have the same limitations. The first method is based on autoregressive models with exogenous inputs, whereas the second one combines cross-spectral estimators with interpolation in the frequency domain. The two identification methods are validated by offline simulations and contrasted to the classic method. The results reveal that the classic method fails when the noninterference hypothesis is not fulfilled; on the contrary, the two proposed techniques give reliable estimates. Finally, the three identification methods are applied to experimental data from a closed-loop control task with pilots. The two proposed techniques give comparable estimates, different from those obtained by the classic method. The differences match those found with the simulations. Thus, the two identification methods provide a good alternative to the classic method and make it possible to simultaneously estimate human's neuromuscular and visual responses in cases where the classic method fails.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7045541
Pages (from-to)2780-2791
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Cybernetics
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Dec


  • Haptic feedback
  • neuromuscular system
  • pilot identification
  • tracking task

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Information Systems
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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