Agnostic Controller Enhancement (ACE)
Award last edited on: 3/20/2023

Sponsored Program
Awarding Agency
DOD : Navy
Total Award Amount
Award Phase
Solicitation Topic Code
Principal Investigator
Michael Patel

Company Information

Pison Technology Inc

258 Harvard Street Suite 312
Brookline, MA 02446
   (617) 520-4815
Location: Single
Congr. District: 04
County: Norfolk

Phase I

Contract Number: 80NSSC18P2200
Start Date: 00/00/00    Completed: 00/00/00
Phase I year
Phase I Amount
Access to up-to-date information, with contextual relevance, is critical to advancing the mission objectives for human exploration in space. Crew efficiency and safety depends on the associated workflows. The proposed project aims to develop a new user experience (UX) for information visualization, with a custom user interface (UI), navigated via micromovement sensors. This innovation allows crew members to access visual data, even while their hands are occupied during a maintenance/support task. This proprietary control functionality (Pison device) will be combined with commercially-available X-R (Augmented, Hybrid, and Virtual Reality) technology. The Pison device utilizes neuromuscular and Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) inputs, which are translated into a UI control signal. The UI will be displayed on smart glasses, which allows for navigation of procedures, while visual cues and unobtrusive non-visual notifications are also presented to the user. This system will be tested in a simulated environment, on the ground, to ensure acceptability for end-users. The proposed proof-of-concept trial will incorporate the display/navigation of step-by-step instructions, response to notifications, and assembly of a physical object. The user will maintain visual access to their surroundings, as well as the procedural instructions. In addition, the system can query the user’s attention through notifications (auditory/haptic), which the user will acknowledge using the Pison device. Subjective and objective measures of task performance and efficiency will be collected in order to refine the hardware design. This will allow for future integration of the technology into standard mission workflow and on-board systems (Phase II). Potential NASA Applications The proposed X-R system may be applied to mission-related maintenance tasks. In addition, this same system may be used to display and navigate crew timelines, as well as procedures and supporting documentation linked to calendar events. Beyond the crew capsule, the system may also be used in the space suit environment with integration into a heads-up display. Potential Non-NASA Applications The proposed system could be modified for industries with extensive safety and efficiency goals for remote workers. This includes the oil and gas, pharmaceutical, construction, and automotive industries.

Phase II

Contract Number: N68335-21-C-0163
Start Date: 3/16/2021    Completed: 3/7/2022
Phase II year
Phase II Amount
Naval Special Warfare (NSW) and MARSOC, particularly dismounted Operators, currently rely on physical toggles and controllers or touchscreens to interact, control, or otherwise benefit from a SUAS or UGV capabilities on mission. These current control solutions are both subject to failure and create potential to degrade Operator survivability and lethality depending on their context of use. For example, touchscreens cannot be operated when wearing gloves or in damp or wet environments and require head-down use. Controllers or toggles require Operators to disengage from their weapon and are difficult to use when prone. To address these shortcomings, Pison is proposing to extend, refine, test, and evaluate our TRL 4 Agnostic Controller Enhancement (ACE) system. ACE leverages Pisons wristwatch-sized gesture control wearable, GAMBIT, that detects finger movements in combination with hand and arm movements to enable gesture control of electronic systems. ACE applies GAMBIT to the control of SUAS and UGVs by allowing Operators to create custom gestures that can be mapped to both direct control and indirect control (through gesture-based direction of onboard autonomy and autonomous capabilities) of these platforms and payloads. Evaluating the benefit of ACE for its intended use case will be achieved through a combination of synthetic and live testing.

The anticipated benefits of the full-scope ACE solution will be immediately tangible to several USN and USMC communities, including Naval Special Warfare, MARSOC, Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD), and Marine maneuver forces such as Infantry. ACE solves N

Wearable, Gesture, UAS, UGV, HMI, Physiology, Sensor, UxS