A sustained hyper-g load as a tool to simulate space sickness.

W. van der Bles, B. de Graaf, J. E. Bos, E. Groen, J. R. Krol

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In April 1989 the three European scientist astronauts of the D1 Spacelab Mission were exposed to a 1.5 hours +3G centrifuge run in supine position, resulting in a linear acceleration along the subjects' x-axis. Afterwards, severe motion sickness symptoms were provoked by head movements (Sickness Induced by Centrifugation: SIC). The astronauts mentioned close similarities with what they experienced in space during the D1-Spacelab Mission in 1985, where head movements also provoked motion sickness symptoms (Space Adaptation Syndrome: SAS). Moreover, the astronauts agreed that the rank order of their susceptibility to SAS was the same as for SIC. It was therefore postulated that with this method SAS could be simulated on earth. Additionally, in otolith function tests following the centrifuge run, changes in visual-vestibular interaction were observed, which replicated objective findings obtained with the same astronauts immediately after the D1 Spacelab Mission. During the last couple of years a series of experiments has been carried out to determine the nature of the stimulus causing SIC, the incidence of SIC, and the underlying cardio-vascular and/or vestibular mechanisms. These experiments were carried out on several astronauts and some 50 'normal' healthy subjects. In the next sections the main findings of all these experiments and the implications are summarized.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Gravitational Physiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1997


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