Mechanisms for Improving Fidelity and Efficacy of Centrifuge Training
Agency / Branch:
DOD / NAVY
Improving the ability of ground-based simulators as a training mechanism for flight will enable faster and potentially more solid training of flight crew. With an eye to the requirements of the newest aircraft, which provide flight sensations and maneuvers previously impossible, we propose to improve centrifuge training. Specifically, we will tackle the issues of aberrant vestibular signals and of G-LOC training. Aberrant vestibular signals are caused whenever a subject moves their head in a direction other than that of the spinning centrifuge. We have developed a vestibular stimulation protocol that utilizes small amounts of current applied via skin electrodes that can simulate motion in stationary individuals. We will establish the use of this protocol to cancel the unwanted effects of a centrifuge trainer on the vestibular system. Gravity-Induced Loss of Consciousness (G-LOC) is a serious problem affecting even experienced pilots. While a well-performed anti-G straining maneuver (AGSM) can provide more protection than even a G-suit, there is no formal training metric. We will use our aeromedical and biomedical expertise to develop an unobtrusive sensor that can provide real-time feedback to the trainee as to the efficacy of their AGSM.
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