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From: (Henry Spencer)
Subject: Re: "2001" explosive decompression bailout: possible?
Date: Mon, 23 Aug 1999 04:10:17 GMT

In article <>,
Ian Stirling  <> wrote:
>>Sudden loss of consciousness, without warning.
>>The body has no sensors for oxygen shortage...
>I suppose you get 3 seconds or so, as vision dims.
>Based on blackout times at high G.

No, the slow high-G blackout is due to gradual blood starvation.  In
modern jet fighters, which can achieve high Gs much more abruptly than the
older ones (or the centrifuges), it happens exactly as I described:
sudden unconsciousness without the slightest warning, due to a total
cutoff of oxygen to the brain.  This phenomenon, called G-LOC (G-induced
Loss Of Consciousness), was only recognized in the last 10-15 years.  It
killed a number of pilots before it was understood; the pilots were
*expecting* a few seconds of warning, and didn't get it.  (Worse, the
recovery of consciousness is slow and there is a period of grogginess and
The good old days                   |  Henry Spencer
weren't.                            |      (aka

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