Wednesday, December 31, 2003

i should've been born a fighter pilot
"With increased agility comes the problem of the force of gravity, or g-force, the stress applied to a pilot's body when the airplane maneuversat high speed. G-force causes blood to drain down from the brain temporarily, extingusihing vision or even conciousness. Several weeks after my virtual flight in the F/A-22, Maj. Beau "Ripple" Booth gives me a lesson in g-force during a real flight in the Air Force's F-16 Fighting Falcon when he yanks us into a turn at 500 knots. My gravity suit 's air bladders inflate against my legs to counteract the blood pushing downward. I also begin the prescribed training maneuver--holding a deep breath and flexing every muscle in my body. But he takes us to the brink of 9 g's, which crushes me in my seat as if i weighed three-quarters of a ton. I can't take it. Vision fades to darkness, and I begin to pass out. He eases off. I come back disorientated and nauseated, my sight returning as chatoic pinwheels and checkerboards."

wings of change - michael klesius, national geographic dec 2003

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