Airplanes are pretty amazing if you think about it.
In just a few hours, a giant metal bird can transport you across entire continents.
But anyone who's traveled by plane knows it comes with many downsides.
Cramped leg room, babies crying, germs, bad WIFI…
But, while it's not something I would want to do for a long period of time, there are flights that last almost an entire day.
Begging the question: what would one of these flights do to your body?
While most flights take only about 2 hours, the number of long-haul flights lasting over 12 hours is growing.
And recently, engineers have built a plane able to stay in the air for 20 hours non-stop.
And a new flight has gotten close to this limit.
In October 2018, passengers on-board Singapore Airlines flight SQ21 from Newark, New Jersey to Singapore made history by participating in the longest non-stop flight ever recorded, clocking in at about 18 hours and 45 minutes.
But sitting on a plane for that long has to come with some consequences.
While major medical issues are not common on typical flights, some aspects of the airplane environment can have a negative effect on health, especially on longer flights.
For instance, cabin pressure, oxygen saturation and vibrations can cause nausea.
And the lack of humidity measured on long-haul flights, often less than the set standard, can result in dry eyes, throat, and skin.
One 2005 study found that the oxygen levels were also insufficient, measuring levels that would normally prompt doctors to administer supplemental oxygen.
Remember the cramped leg room?
Well, it turns out that sitting for long periods of time can cause blood clots in your legs and swelling.
Long flights have also been found to increase the risk of blood clots in the lungs, possibly due to mild dehydration.
And if that doesn't deter you from flying, wait until you hear about the radiation!
Since you are at a higher altitude where the air is thinner, you are more exposed to the cosmic radiation coming from the sun.
And your exposure amount increases depending on how high you are, how long the flight is, and how far away you are from the equator.
Some studies have even raised concerns about the effects of radiation on individuals taking long-haul flights, especially aircraft crew members.
In 2000, researchers at the Institute for Protection and Nuclear Safety measured average radiation doses on flights lasting over 3 hours ranged from 3 microsievert per hour to nearly 10 microsievert an hour, depending on the latitude in which the plane was flying.
Because these numbers are above the recommended limit of 1 microsievert a year set by the International Coalition of Radiological Protection,
the study's authors urge airlines to record radiation doses for each crew member and assess their exposure.
I don't know about you, but I think I'm going to stick to road trips for a while, or teleportation because I can do that.
This is the animation world.
So do you like flying?
Or do you have a fear of it?
Would you ever take a long flight like this?
Let me know in the comment section below.
Curious to know how you might be able survive a plane crash?
Check out this video.
Before a new aircraft ever leaves the ground, manufacturers put the model through tons of tests that look at things
like extreme heat and cold, high winds, excess water, ice, and lightning strikes.
As always, my name is Blocko, this has been Life Noggin, don't forget to keep on thinking.