711 HPW - Airman Systems Directorate

Photo of a pilot in a plane wearing an oxygen mask

    The Air Force Research Laboratory's Airman Systems Directorate is a key component of the 711th Human Performance Wing. The directorate is composed of a diverse group of scientists and engineers studying developing technologies specific to the human element of warfighting capability. We are leading the Air Force in its human-centered research, and we integrate biological and cognitive technologies to optimize and protect the Airman's capabilities to Fly, Fight, and Win in Air, Space, and Cyberspace.  We are headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio, with additional locations at Brooks Joint Base San Antonio, Texas, Cincinnati, Ohio, and Baltimore, Maryland.

711 HPW/RH Director

Photo of Dr. Kevin T. Geiss, Director, Airman Systems DirectorateDr. Kevin T. Geiss, is the Director, Airman Systems Directorate, 711th Human Performance Wing, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

About Us


Headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, the 711th Human Performance Wing, Airman Systems Directorate (RH) is the heart of Airman-centered science and technology for the Air Force. RH is focused on enduring challenges to enable, sustain, and enhance multi-domain capable Airman and Airman-machine operations. RH leverages five primary Technical Competencies (1) Training, (2) Adaptive Warfighter Interfaces, (3) Bioeffects, (4) Bioengineering and (5) Warfighter Medical Optimization to deliver technology options for future USAF capabilities.



Organizational Structure


The men and women of the Airman Systems Directorate are responsible for developing the Airman-related technology for systems crucial to continued aerospace superiority. The staff also works to transfer the same or similar technology to civilian applications whenever appropriate. The directorate is organized into five divisions located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH and Joint Base San Antonio - Ft. Sam Houston, TX.

WARFIGHTER READINESS RESEARCH DIVISION (RHA) - The division conducts research on learning and cognitive science methods, models, and technologies for personalized, career-long proficiency-based training and readiness management that provide Airmen the knowledge, skills, and experiences to maximize mission effectiveness across the full range of operations and environments. The division emphasizes research in the appropriate blending of live, virtual, constructive (LVC) technologies, as well as in performance measurement and assessment, cognitive science, and computational and mathematical modeling. 

AIRMAN BIOENGINEERING DIVISION (RHB) - The division aims to discover, demonstrate, and transition capabilities from the full spectrum of biosciences to optimize and safe-guard Airman physical and cognitive performance and maximize the potential of the multi-domain Airman.  The division’s mission is accomplished through three core research areas that collaboratively conduct research to: identify underlying biological mechanisms and expressed biomarkers correlative with physiological and cognitive status; develop molecular-based sensor and analytics platforms to sense and assess Airman performance levels; utilize developed technologies to sustain and augment operator cognitive and physical performance through the use of personalized predictive models of an operator state.  The division matures technologies for transition to the operational community via the Sensing and Assessment Product Line.

WARFIGHTER INTERFACE DIVISION (RHC) - The division is at the heart of Airman effectiveness—seamlessly linking human functionality to the weaponry, information, and environmental complexity of war. It conducts research to discover, develop, and transition advanced interface technology, decision aiding tools and situationally-adaptive augmentation methods to seamlessly integrate Airmen and intelligent machines into maximally collaborative teams. Warfighter Interface Division technologies help mitigate the ambiguities of war, enhance rapid decision making, and foster superior mission performance for our Airmen.

BIOEFFECTS DIVISION (RHD) - The division leads the mission to exploit and protect against bioeffects of battlefield environmental stressors. Specific objectives include facilitating directed energy weapons development and use and preventing mission degradation due to directed energy exposure, enabling our forces to function safely, effectively, and efficiently on the directed energy battlefield. The division has played a key role in understanding the effects of directed energy weapons for more than 50 years, starting with nuclear flash eye protection.

WARFIGHTER MEDICAL OPTIMIZATION DIVISION (RHM) - The division leads the Air Force Medical Service science and technology research that seeks to enable, sustain, enhance, and restore Airman health and performance in operational environments.  The division elucidates the biomedical impact of flight by investigating how the extraordinary environment of flight affects the processes of humans, the ability to maintain their homeostasis, and the potential risk for injury or secondary insult.  In addition, the division seeks to maximize airman readiness by capturing and analyzing diverse attributes of humans and operational environments to drive optimal performance. 

Facebook Twitter
We are so proud of our Air Force Research Laboratory - AFRL-Carroll High School iGEM team!!
AFRL and the Lab Patts know how it's done. GOLD! Congrats!
Congrats to the Air Force Research Laboratory - AFRL -sponsored iGEM team from Carroll High School, who took GOLD in the 2017 Giant Jamboree in Boston last weekend. WHOOHOO!! The team was led by 711HPWers Drs. Nancy Kelley-Loughnane and Michael Goodson.
US Air Force fights the opioid crisis by using acupuncture on the battlefield.
Those who eat together, win together. ;) Check out this partnership!
Starting tomorrow, a team composed of students from Carroll High School and experts from the Air Force Research Laboratory - AFRL will participate in the 2017 iGem Giant Jamboree in Boston. Leading the team from AFRL are Nancy Kelley-Loughnane of the 711th Human Performance Wing and Michael Goodson of Materials & Manufacturing. It takes a village! Go Team!! #STEM #science #DaytonOhio The iGEM Competition is the premiere student team competition in Synthetic Biology. For over 10 years, iGEM has been encouraging students to work together to solve real-world challenges by building genetically engineered biological systems with standard, interchangeable parts. Student teams design, build and test their projects over the summer and gather to present their work and compete at the annual Jamboree.
A research team at the Air Force Research Laboratory - AFRL's 711th Human Performance Wing in Ohio has invented a device that helps study nanotoxicity. Why? Because nanoparticles are being used in a wide range of applications, and the Air Force’s research team believes it is critical to proactively investigate their toxicity.
Check it out!! Streaming now.
Lying in bed all day sounds like the ultimate dream job, but is it really that great? NASA will put 12 volunteers to the test in beds angled downwards to test the effects of slightly more pressure on the head. These volunteers are part of a NASA study partnering with the German Space Agency's Institute of Aerospace Medicine envihab facility. The study is known as VaPER (VIIP and Psychological envihab Research) and is part of the Flight Analogs Program. Analogs are situations one would have on Earth but produces effects on the body that one would have in space -- mentally, emotionally, and physically. #science
The Air Force Office of Scientific Research today announced it will award approximately $19.1 million in grants to 43 scientists and engineers from 37 research institutions and small businesses who submitted winning research proposals through the Air Force's Young Investigator Research Program. The YIP is open to scientists and engineers at research institutions across the United States who received Ph.D. or equivalent degrees in the last five years and who show exceptional ability and promise for conducting basic research. The objective of this program is to foster creative basic research in science and engineering, enhance early career development of outstanding young investigators, and increase opportunities for the young investigators to recognize the Air Force mission and the related challenges in science and engineering.
Did you know the Navy is in Dayton, Ohio?? Naval Medical Research Unit Dayton (NAMRU-D) and 711HPW have a strong partnership with the common goal to improve the performance of our service members through research and consultation. 711HPW Commander Brig. Gen. Mark Koeniger (center front) and AFRL Vice Commander Col. Elena Oberg (right front) joined NAMRU-D to celebrate the 242nd Navy birthday during the #NAMRUD Dining Out, October 12.
The USAF School of Aerospace Medicine's Aeromedical Consultation Service here reviews more than 2,000 waiver recommendation requests for Air Force pilots, navigators and other air crew annually. With a staff of about 80 Airmen, ACS ensures aviators get back in the sky as soon as possible. “You know, these [Airmen] just want to fly,” said Lt. Col. Eddie Davenport, ACS Internal Medicine chief cardiologist. “Even after potentially life-threatening cardiac disease, these aviators push to get back in the cockpit - no excuses, no balking at deployments. Our hopeful goal is to safely get them back flying.”
AFRL's 711 Human Performance Wing supports and encourages students to absolutely check this program out!! Amazing opportunities abound in AFRL!!! Don't miss out! (Take a look at LEGACY's first year's successes! Students from across the Miami-Valley area had the opportunity to participate in Craftsman Camps and work on base as Junior Apprentices. We're excited to share their experiences with you!)
"[From] the very beginnings of the Air Force, there has been concurrent, less theatrical study of another interface between humans and their machines that has been just as ground breaking; that between the machine and the human brain." Check out this article about creating synthetic teammates featuring principal engineering research psychologist with the 711th Human Performance Wing at the AFRL Dr. Mark Draper.
If you didn't get a chance to see the 2017 AFRL Inspire, here is the link to check it out. Congrats to all participants! And of course we'd be remiss if we didn't give a supportive shout out and high five to Maj. Patrick Mudimbi, Dr. Clarise Starr, and Dr. Leah Rowe - all of whom are 711HPWers - who rocked the stage. Awesome job! https://www.dvidshub.net/video/557649/afrl-inspire
Congrats! If you know high school or college students in STEM-related fields, please pass along AFOSR, AFRL, and our page info. We'll be posting internship opportunities in the near future.
Research audiologist here in the Air Force Research Laboratory - AFRL's 711th Human Performance Wing studies communication in Air Force environments. “My interest is in understanding the basic mechanisms by which people hear and try to perceive speech in these more complex environments,” explained Iyer. “When it’s quiet, it’s pretty easy to understand speech. But when the environment gets complicated and you add in factors like noise, other people talking, foreign accents, then it gets challenging to filter out the different conversations and people.” #AFOSR #OhioState #science #researchrocks
[Berkeley] Scientists have found that humans experience 27 distinct categories of emotion, thereby challenging the long-held assumption in psychology that humans have just six main categories, namely happiness sadness, anger, fear, disgust and surprise. "Our hope is that our findings will help other scientists and engineers more precisely capture the emotional states that underlie moods, brain activity and expressive signals, leading to improved psychiatric treatments, an understanding of the brain basis of emotion and technology responsive to our emotional needs," said author Alan Cowen.

Contact Us

711th Human Performance Wing
Business Operations/Communications
2610 Seventh Street, Bldg. 441
Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 45433