F-22 causing pilot coughing fits
The Air Force's stealth fighter pilots have been experiencing coughing fits in the cockpits of F-22's, a problem for which officials say they have no clear solution.I have a theory based on similar conditions caused by my BiPAP device. It can cause the sinus passages to become dry, which leads to the production of more phlegm to deal with the dryness, which in turn leads to coughing and sneezing. I added a humidifier attachment to the device and it has helped to greatly reduce the problem. On a plane like the F-22 it would take a much more sophisticated humidifier to deal with the problem, but it would be worth it if the plane was rendered safer for the pilots.
Newly released congressional records show that the F-22's oxygen system, which has been criticized for causing hypoxia - which causes choking and leads to confusion, memory loss and blackouts - has also been reported to cause a condition called 'acceleration atelectasis.'
'Acceleration atelectasis results from pilots breathing high concentrations of oxygen (above 60 percent) while wearing anti-G trousers, and exposure to G-forces,' Maj. Gen. Gharles Lyon, who headed an investigation into the Air Force's Raptor steal fighters, wrote in response to questions following a September testimony before a House subcommittee.
The condition causes chronic coughing, Lyon said.
F-22 pilot Maj. Jeremy Gordon has described situations where a group of F-22 pilots will be gathered in single room and 'a vast majority of them will be coughing a lot of the time' and one Air Force widow claimed her husband's constant coughing contributed to his suicide, Wired reported.
Lyon said the air force will investigate the condition but offered no clear solution to fixing the problem.
'The Air Force will continue to explore further potential causes through long term breathing air analysis and human systems integration efforts,' Lyon wrote.