Contrails
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Experimental Studies Of Prolonged Wakefulness

Report Number: WADC TR 55-395
Author: Chiles, Walter D.
Corporate Author: Materials Laboratory
Laboratory: Aero Medical Laboratory
Date of Publication: 1955-12
Pages: 21
PB Number: PB121393
AD Number: AD0100698

Abstract:
Two experiments were carried out concerning the effects of prolonged wakefulness and of fatigue on performance of psychomotor and psychological tasks. The first experiment involved four subjects each of whom sat individually in an aircraft cockpit for 56 hours. During this time, measures of reaction time and alertness were taken, and, at the end of the experiment, two of the subjects flew ILAS passes in a Link trainer. The reaction time and the alertness measures reflected considerable variability in the attentiveness of the subjects. The performance in the Link trainer was judged to be within the limits of acceptability. The second experiment involved the assessment of the effects of 30 hours of wakefulness with continuous work (painting a barracks) on the performance of 15 subjects on a psychological and pscyhomotor task. In addition, the effects of two different drugs, d-ampthetamine sulphate and cortisone, were compared with those of a placebo. The psychological test involved summing of rows of figures, and the psychomotor test involved arm-hand steadiness. Each of these tests distinguished, to some extent, the two drug groups from the placebo group. It was concluded that two drugs improve perfromance on the addition test, whereas they tended to decrease arm-hand steadiness as a function of time.


Provenance:
Hunt Library, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
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