Hypobaric chamber better known as altitude chamber is a chamber used in high terrestrial altitude. Its main function is to determine the effects of increasing altitude on human body. It is a great tool for examining human body and determine if the individual can function in high altitude or not. In the modern world it is a very beneficial tool which is useful in various fields.
Field of operation
Hypobaric chamber exposes the human body to extreme conditions like hypoxia and hypobaria. The subject is placed inside the chamber and breathes oxygen from oxygen mask the atmospheric pressure is then reduced to increase the altitude up to several thousand meters. The individual then takes off the mask and is asked to perform various trivial tasks. The inability to perform such tasks or not performing them in the desired time may show symptoms which indicate that time of useful consciousness has exceeded.
Importance and use
The sole purpose of this chamber is to know the hypoxia symptoms of individuals as it changes from individual to individual. Those who can maintain their time of useful consciousness can perform well at high altitudes and are relatively more tolerant to high altitudes.
Military pilots and civilian pilots are exposed to the chamber before they are hired just to ensure their expected performance at high altitude. The pilots are made to give this test once in a time period of 5 years. Not only military pilots but airlines pilots are also exposed the chamber. Apart from them, some sports persons also go inside the chamber to evaluate their tolerance level.
Proper maintenance and care should be taken while performing the task; the equipments should be checked to avoid any injury. For ascent, the subject is asked to clear their ears. During ascent, the student is asked to yawn and during ascent Valsalva maneuver is performed. The opposite should not be carried out as it will result into barotrauma of ears.Apart from evaluating pilot’s performance, hypobaric surgery is also used to enhance the performance of sportspersons since mild exposure to high altitude results into the increased number of blood cells which enhances their performance and improves their stamina.