Colonel John Stapp's Impact On Aviation

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“For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.” This quotes date back to the 15th century which informs us that aviation was thought off back to the middle ages. To this day, many aviators contributed to aviation in many different aspects. Throughout the past century, aviation has progressed significantly. “airplanes were starting to fly higher and faster thanks to new streamlined fuselages and powerful jet and rocket engines.” (Teitel, 2015). Unfortunately, there was not any adequate safety measures provided for pilots and passengers which were prone to dangerous crashes. It was not till Colonel John Stapp, a decorated Air Force flight surgeon,…show more content…
His research was vital to the future of aviation. Stapp wanted to understand how long the human body can function in high altitudes. Volunteers were used in the experiments to test human limits. The biggest issue was the volunteers including Stapp himself would suffer from decompression sickness where the “effects could be excruciatingly painful, permanently crippling, or even fatal” (Ryan, 2015). Stapp endured pain and bruising on his elbows and knees. Therefore it is essential to understand the effect before performing any “ high-altitude manned flight” (Ryan, 2015). On a separate note, Stapp keenly observed the use of variety different of in-flight lunches “ to assess the effects of different food types in a low pressure environment” (Ryan, 2015). This assessment allowed whoever is on an aircraft must follow procedures in what should be consumed during flight. While Stapp attempted using pain killer medications before conducting the experiments, the medications had no effects whatsoever. After spending long hours in the air, Stapp realized that breathing pressurized oxygen before flight alleviated the pain during the test runs. Soon Stapp initiated a ‘pre breathing protocol’ where the volunteers will inhale the pressurized oxygen 30 minutes before flight. The important discovery “to one of the core problems of…show more content…
Meaning that emergency ejections and crashes proven to be dangerous than ever. Colonel John Stapp created high powered sled called the Sonic Wind No. 1 that could deliver supersonic like speeds to orchestrate the situations that Chuck Yeager exhibited. At his first attempt, he managed to reach a speed of 421 miles per hour which earned the title as the “Fastest Man on Earth.” That was a success to him but now his primary concern is protecting pilots during ejection. Stapp calculated the maximum stress that a pilot should withstand during a crash and then simulated the run. Stapp feared that the rapid. deceleration may results blindness. Stapp’s lung collapsed and his eyeballs were pulled out from his sockets along with bleeding in the eye. Stapp was fortunate enough to have windscreen attached onto the sled for extra protection along with the helmet otherwise it may have resulted in a much tragic injury. “During that event, Stapp broke the land speed record when he reached 632 mph, earning him the title fastest man on Earth. He also set a new record for G-forces (46.2 Gs) a human has ever voluntarily withstood” (Kane
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