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Human Centrifuge: "Studies of Accelerations in Manned Vehicles" NASA Langley Resarch Center

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Published on Apr 1, 2012

more at http://scitech.quickfound.net/astro/s...

The human centrifuge shown in the film was located at the Aviation Medical Acceleration Laboratory of the U. S. Naval Air Development Center, Johnsville, Pa.

"1958 NASA Langley Research Center footage from the spaceflight program. The video depicts a device used to simulate accelerations and g-forces encountered particularly during exit and re-entry flight."

This film was made to accompany a presentation by C. H. Woodling at the twenty-seventh annual meeting of the Institute of the Aeronautical Sciences in New York, New York on January 26-29, 1959. A portion of the text and a link to the full paper are below.

Public domain film from NASA, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and mild video noise reduction applied.

This film was silent. I have added piano music composed and performed by Taylor Hayward. Mr. Hayward says: "...free to download and play, free to rebroadcast in any form for any purpose, free to play in public, free to publish for profit, and free to sample... There is no copyright on this music." http://www.taylorhayward.org/

http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/cas...

STUDIES OF PILOT CONTROL DURING LAUNCHING AND REENTRY OF SPACE VEHICLES, UTILIZING THE CENTRIFUGE

By C. H. Woodling, Aeronautical Research Engineer, NASA-Langley Research Center
and Carl C. Clark, Biophysicist, U. S. Naval Air Development Center, Johnsville, Pa.

INTRODUCTION
With the ever increasing complexity of airplanes and the nearness to reality of manned space vehicles the use of pilot-controlled flight simulators has become imperative. The state of the art in flight simulation has progressed well with the demand. Pilot-controlled flight simulators are finding increasing uses in aeromedical research, airplane and airplane systems design, and preflight training. At the present many flight simulators are in existence with various degrees of sophistication and sundry purposes...

Areas requiring special consideration include, pilot physiological tolerance to accelerations, associated body support and restraint required and pilot-vehicle control in the acceleration environment. The human centrifuge at the U. S. Naval Air Development Center, Johnsville, Pa., by means of a controlled two-gimbal system can provide an accurate reproduction of the linear accelerations of flight along all three axes.

This facility , therefore, provides a means to investigate problems such as those mentioned above. The purpose of this paper is to describe the centrifuge and its operation and t o discuss use of the centrifuge in pilot-controlled flight simulation and other work pertinent to space studies.

CENTRIFUGE DESCRIPTION

The Johnsville human centrifuge... is in the Aviation Medical Acceleration Laboratory at the Naval Air Development Center, Johnsville, Pa. This centrifuge has an arm of 50-foot radius directly mounted on the armature shaft of a 4,000-horsepower d-c motor. A peak value of 40G radial acceleration can be obtained in 7 seconds. A t the end of the centrifuge arm is a gondola within a power-driven double-gimbal system. The outer gimbal which rotates about a horizontal axis perpendicular to the arm may rotate to 90 degrees. The inner gimbal which rotates about an axis in the plane of the outer gimbal, may rotate through 360 degrees. This gimbal has been limited in deflection to about +/-100 degrees in past programs to prevent exposure of the pilot to large negative accelerations. The angular velocities of the gimbals can reach 2.8 radians/sec and the angular accelerations can reach 10 radians/sec squared. When radial accelerations do not exceed 20G, the gimbals may be driven with gondola loads up to 600 pounds...

PILOT TOLERANCE STUDIES

Several investigations have been made recently on the centrifuge to determine mainly pilot physiological tolerance to acceleration considering several body support techniques. One such study considered pilot tolerance and performance under linear accelerations typical of those calculated for a high-drag vehicle reentering from orbit... All subjects wore standard Navy Z-2 G-suits... breathing became difficult around the 12G level. Blurring of vision was reported by some subjects at levels of G near 16. Subjects were able to operate a small, right hand control stick under accelerations as high as 25G...

Another investigation, undertakenby R. Flannagan Gray of AMAL, to determine pilot tolerance to high G exposure is a study of G protection afforded by submersion of the subject in water. The Gray-G capsule... has been constructed to carry out this work... Centrifuge accelerations above 15G, back to chest, had not been tolerated by humans. But in the Gray G capsule back-to-chest accelerations of 31 G have been reached...

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