Ergonomic system

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The basic ergonomic system is man-machine system. Man-machine system identifies inter-dependencies between man, machine and the environment, which on the one hand can lead to achieving results of work, on the other hand they can cause physical or psychological harm to the operator. Man-machine system is the keystone of the work process is a component of all systems of production. In the course of its operation it leads to producing specific goods.

Elements of an ergonomic system

Man is a biological system, the machine is a tool to replace or assist a man at work. Elements of the man-machine systems are:

  • Work - a process that takes place between the machine's - signaling device -receptors - effectors - controls - and the machine. It is deliberate activities of man that require spending power and energy conversion, more than is necessary for resting of his metabolic system, even when there is no motion in the physical sense.
  • Working environment is a whole technical, physical, chemical, biological, psychosocial conditions in which the work is done (lighting, noise, humidity, temperature, radiation, etc.).
  • Organizational determinants of job include:
    • adoption of working posture (standing, sitting, walking, bending, forced, etc.)
    • the rhythm and pace of work,
    • breaks.
  • Operating system components:
    • Man: receptors, effectors,
    • Machine: signalling and control devices,
    • Flows: informational and material.
  • Structure of the work process
    • collection of information, receiving: signal (the carrier of information) natural or artificial, signals quantitative and qualitative, human senses: sight, hearing, touch, smell, movement, the impact of signalling device to receiving of control information.
    • interpretation of information (the decision),
    • action, decision: automatic - unconscious response to the signal, decisions based on conscious choice, experiences and routines influence all decision-making

Diagnosis of the ergonomic system

Performing of work is associated with the physical and mental burden of the body. Full assessment of the burden of the body consists of the following elements:

  • Physical stress,
  • Psychological stress,
  • Environmental load,
  • The risks of occupational diseases.
  • Environment: The whole technical, physical, chemical, biological, and psychosocial conditions in which the work is done Between the environment and man should be a balance
  • Environmental impact: fatigue, accidents, poisoning, occupational diseases, lost productivity, reduced quality of work, increased production costs
  • Physical environment: noise, vibration, lighting, climate, air pollution, biological, radiation
  • Conditions: the length of the working day, intensity of work, the rhythm and pace of work, holiday breaks.

Criteria for assessing the condition and operation of the system are ergonomic metrics that indicate the size of errors and deviations, determined by comparing the facts to normative values.

See also:


  • International Ergonomics Associacion, Ergonomics. Taylor & Francis, 1957.
  • Hendrick, H. W. (1991). Ergonomics in organizational design and management. Ergonomics, 34(6), 743-756.
  • Kroemer, K. H., Kroemer, H. B., & Kroemer-Elbert, K. E. (2001). Ergonomics: how to design for ease and efficiency. Pearson College Division.
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics Society website