Procedural and Configural DDisplays for PWR NPP Start-Up: Towards and Ecological Interface

Dal Vernon C. Reising, Barclay G. Jones, Penelope M. Sanderson, Neville Moray, Shayma Shaheen, Jens Rasmussen

Research output: Book/ReportReportResearchpeer-review


Traditional Single-Sensor, Single-Indicator control panels and displays are poorly matched to the cognitive needs of operators, especially for large and complex systems. Research over the last decade on interface design has suggested that computer-generated graphical or “configural”displays are better designed to support complex monitoring and data integration tasks.Ecological Interface Design (EID) is becoming more widely accepted as a viable basis for designing interfaces for continuous process control systems. If the start-up sequence of a plant is thought of as constructing the plant from its components, then the level at which operators think about the plant becomes progressively more global and abstract during the start-up procedure. As operators construct the plant, they climb an “abstraction hierarchy” in terms of their cognitive activity. Standard operating procedures (SOPs) for start-up do not support this kind of thinking,nor do they provide the activity management needed. A graphical interface is proposed for pressurized water reactor (PWR) nuclear power plant start-up which should promote the correct sequence of behaviors, diminish incorrect sequences, and provide constant feedback about the state of the plant.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages35
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


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