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06 OCTOBER, 2017 (MAINS)


Q1. What are the physical and medical challenges of living in a high altitude location like the Siachen glacier? How can modern technology help protect the life of humans living in such harsh terrain?


Please write the answer in comments section

  • Osho Korde

    The risk of high altitude illness depends on how quickly one ascends to high altitude. The recommendation is that one can safely ascend from sea level to 8,000 feet above sea level in 24 hours. Beyond this one should not ascend more than 1,000 feet (about 300 meters) in 24 hours. But, in practice this is difficult to follow. Traveling by road is therefore, considered safer which gives ample time for the body to get adjusted to altitude. Return by plane to lower altitudes is no problem.

    Hypertension, diabetes and compromised lung function or heart disease are risk factors, which can lead to acute mountain sickness. More importantly, acute illnesses like flue, gastroenteritis and fever are the precipitating factors for high altitude illness.

    It is absolutely important to be aware of these symptoms and to seek medical assistance quickly in the cases of AMS. The following symptoms must warrant urgent medical assistance: 1. Severe Breathlessness 2. Headache 3. Vomiting 4. Ataxia 5. Staggering gait (like drunk) 6. Sleepiness 7. Unconsciousness 8. Pain abdomen 9. Visual Disturbances

    Modern technology:
    Bionic Organs
    Many people die because of organ failure, which is caused by many things, including cellular death, disease, and trauma. One major key to overcoming environmental threats to our biological bodies is better, more durable organs, including robotic ones. A revolution in this field is also underway.

    Wearable Tech for Temperature Control
    wearable tech that keeps people cool or warm in the harshest conditions
    Our skin and temperature regulation can handle extreme temperatures for short periods of time, but long term, we need a stable, suitable climate. Some developing wearable tech is going this direction, offering cooling or heating built into the material.