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Innovation

Lab tests soldiers in extreme climates

The Army's climatic chambers can create temperatures that range from -70 to 165 degrees.
Written by Melanie D.G. Kaplan, Inactive on

At the Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center in Natick, Mass., scientists are testing the effects of temperature on soldiers. To simulate the extreme climates to which service members are often exposed, the Army has two climatic chambers—an Arctic Chamber and a Tropic Chamber. The laboratory can create wind and rain, and temperatures as severe as –70 to 165 degrees.

“We need to simulate these environments and we need to see what are the physiological responses,” said research physiologist Robert Kenefick.

In a hot environment, an individual’s core temperature increases, and sweating is the body’s mechanism for cooling down. But what happens when a soldier is wearing insect repellent? In this video, you can watch Kenefick conduct an experiment in the Tropical Chamber that looks at the impact of DEET on sweating.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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