Tag Archive: military pilots

G Force – What is?

‘G’ is the ratio between a given acceleration and the acceleration due to gravity. The term ‘G force’ is used sometimes to describe a force, which produced acceleration, which is a multiple of the acceleration due to gravity (9.81 m/sq sec). Thus, an acceleration of 98.1 m/sq sec would be 10 G. High sustained G, …

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Exhilarating when Accelerating in Air!

A fast jet can move rapidly on ground, taking off into the medium of air where it can be manoeuvered in flight by the aerodynamic forces generated by the thrust of its engine and manoeuvrability by swift-responding control surfaces. Such movements of the aircraft affect its occupants, the aircrew (pilots and weapons system operators) due …

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G-LOC – Then and Now…

16 September 2011. Reno, Nevada saw the tragic crash of a P-51Mustang [1] during the Reno Air Races. The findings of the National Transportation Safety Board suggests that the pilot had lost consciousness due to ‘overwhelming’ G forces [2]. This occurrence in a modified 1940’s vintage aircraft is no surprise, considering its high thrust to …

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Hypoxia Training – Essentially Useful.

Most military aircrew undergo hypoxia training, including experience in decompression chamber, to understand the ill-effects of the silent but deadly hazard of in-flight hypoxia [1]. Symptoms experienced during the classic mask-off hypoxia indoctrination in altitude/decompression chamber correlates well with reported in-flight symptoms [2]. The objectives of hypoxia indoctrination, an effects-based training, is to make aircrew …

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NVG: Why the Neck Pains?

An informal query on a professional forum whether helicopter pilots suffer from neck pain while using NVG (1), a small group chose to share their thoughts and concerns. Eight of the respondents affirmed that they had discomfort or pain, including disc prolapse and pressure on the nerves as reported by one pilot each. However, there …

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NVG: Pain in the Neck!

Use of Night Vision Goggle (NVG) amongst helicopter aircrew is becoming a matter of concern [1]. On one hand, the pain in the neck is reportedly 29% amongst Australian helicopter aircrew [2], while it peaks to more than 90% Canadian Forces helicopter pilots with more than 150 hours of NVG flight [3]. Other likely causes …

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Decompression Sickness in HA Reconnaissance Aircraft

Pilots flying high altitude (HA) reconnaissance sorties are vulnerable to decompression sickness (DCS) due to, exposure to “pressure equivalent up to 29,500 ft (8992 m) of altitude for over 8 h” [1]. Cruise altitude of such HA reconnaissance aircraft viz. U-2 [2] and MiG 25 [3] is 70,000 ft and 74,000 ft, respectively. There are two …

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Eject! Eject! Eject! – Current Ejection Systems

Technological advancements in the design and development of ejection systems have resulted in significant improvements in the ejection seat and life support systems. Some of the advancements in ejection seat related sub-systems are discussed here.

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Eject! Eject! Eject! – Potential for Ejection Injuries

There are different phases of ejection, with potential for injury to the pilot. Sequentially, these phases are – (a) Canopy separation/ fragmentation; (b) Egress; (c) Ram Air/ Wind blast; (d) Wind drag deceleration; (e) Free fall; (f) Parachute deployment, and (g) Landing. As per the phase of ejection, a pilot can sustain various injuries with spinal injury being the commonest. 

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Eject! Eject! Eject! – Biodynamics of Ejection

The force moving an ejection seat must be sufficient to enable it to clear the tail of the disabled aircraft. To achieve this, the seat must accelerate from zero velocity to about 12.2 to 24.4 m/sec (40 to 80 ft/sec). This gives a rapid rate of rise of acceleration or jolt factor, which must remain …

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