Whole-Body Vibration Experienced by Pilots, Passengers and Crew in Fixed-Wing Aircraft: A State-of-the-Science Review

Neil J. Mansfield, Geetika Aggarwal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Before the coronavirus pandemic, there were 4.5 billion passenger movements by aircraft annually; this is expected to recover after the pandemic. Despite the large numbers of flights per year, there are few reports of whole-body vibration in fixed-wing aircraft. This paper reports a review of literature intended to collate reported data related to exposure to whole-body vibration. Following a filtering process to select relevant articles, a literature search elicited 26 papers reporting measurements of vibration. These included measurements made in the cockpit and cabin, and for pilots, crew and passengers. Aircraft included military, commercial and passenger aircraft, turboprops, jets and piston prop aircraft. There was a lack of consistency on measurement method and analysis, and few met the full requirements of ISO 2631-1. However, measurements showed significant components of vibration at frequencies largely attenuated by the ISO frequency weighting filters, but have been shown to be important in terms of human vibration perception. Propeller aircraft showed strong tonal components in vibration frequency spectra. There was also a significant effect of the flight phase in the vibration exposure. It is recommended that the body of literature related to human response to whole-body vibration on aircraft is augmented with further studies in order to understand in-flight experiences and to optimize human health, wellbeing, comfort and performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-120
Number of pages11
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Supported by the European Commission CleanSky Programme: COMFort in the cabin DEMOnstrator ‘ComfDemo’ project—H2020-CS2-CFP08-2018-01.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors.


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