Study of the Spinal Preloading Piston for the CKU-5/A Rocket Catapult
Small Business Information
P.O. Box 6637, Annapolis, MD, 21401
Walter R. Peck
AbstractSmall, light weight, female pilots have been introduced into the AF and Navy pilot population in recent years. The increased spinal loading of light weight ejectees during the catapult stroke, with its attendant increased probability of spinal injusy, that occurs in an ejection is well known. It has also been shown that any upward acceleration of the aircraft during an ejection can appreciably increased the spinal loading with a drastic increase in the probability of spinal injury. Recent studies have shown that a separate short stroke piston that provides preloading of the spine can result in a much reduced spinal loading with some increase in the catapult separation velocity. This proposal is for an eight month study of the possible application of such a spinal preloading piston to the CKU-5/A rocket catapult used in the ACES-II open ejection seat escape system. This study is believed to be critical importance to all AF pilots, and especially to the light weight female pilots, who will be ejecting with the ACES-II ejection seat for many more years into the future.
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