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A History of United States Naval Aviation Medical Research During World War II


From the Forward of the original 1946 work: Aviation medical research began as a separate entity in the Navy in November 1939, when Commander John R. Poppen, (MC), USN, reported to Chief, Bureau of Aeronautics to establish a Medical Research Section. Shortly thereafter, Commander Eric Liljencrantz, MC-V(S), USNR, was assigned to this section. The earliest work was concerned with problems of personnel selection and training, with visual problems and with the general hygiene and physiological problems of flying. In March 1941, Lieutenant Commander Leon D. Carson, (MC), USN, reported to this section and was assigned to the study of physiological requirements at higher altitudes, oxygen equipment, special visual problems of flying, accelerative stresses, and protection of flying personnel against cold and other hazards and stresses of flying. Work continued under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Aeronautics until October, 1942, when the research group of psychologists was transferred to the Division of Aviation Medicine of the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery; in September, 1943, the remaining activities and personnel of the section were transferred to the Research Division of the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, with liaison officers assigned from the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery to the Flight Division under the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations, and to the Military Requirements Division under Chief, Bureau of Aeronautics. Captain Poppen and Lieutenant Commander Carson were the heads of this Section while it was under the Bureau of Aeronautics. The objectives of Aviation Medical Research continue now as originally stated in September 1943: “To apply results of Aviation Medical Research to problems of flying to (a) increase safety of flying, (b) to increase flying efficiency, and (c) to select and train personnel physically and psychologically qualified to fly. The Aviation Medical Research Section does not engage in actual research; it initiates and directs research effort toward the solution of problems of personnel engaged in military flying. These problems are, essentially, those of adaptation of man to the conditions and the environment of flight and are imposed by the environment itself and by the airplane.”

176 pages

Categories: All Books, Aviation, Medical, U.S. Navy, World War II


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