IMPROVING U.S. NAVY SHIPBOARD HABITABILITY: EFFECTS OF LIGHT AND TEMPERATURE IN BERTHING COMPARTMENTS
Mittleider, Megan C.
Shattuck, Nita L.
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The safe and effective operation of U.S. Navy ships is dependent on Sailors who must stand an alert and responsive watch. When Sailors become fatigued, mishaps and accidents with grave consequences can occur. Habitability factors onboard Navy ships have a direct impact on a Sailor's ability to obtain adequate sleep. Specifically, light and temperature within the berthing compartment can have an effect on a Sailor’s sleep. This study investigates the rack curtain’s effect on light and temperature in the enlisted berthing compartments onboard an underway Navy ship. Two different rack curtains were examined in the study: the standard-issue Navy rack curtain, and an enhanced commercial-off-the-shelf variant. The participants with a standard variant rack curtain received, on average, 5.76 hours of sleep daily. Those with the enhanced variant rack curtain received 5.97 hours of sleep daily. Light and temperature were monitored within each individual participant’s rack. The study found that the enhanced variant rack curtain improved temperature regulation within the rack. Less light was able to permeate the enhanced variant rack curtain than the standard variant rack curtain. Selecting a rack curtain that enhances Sailors’ ability to sleep is a cost-effective and easily implemented means of improving habitability onboard U.S. Navy ships.
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