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More than just flights of fancy

By Wang Ru (China Daily)

11:04, July 18, 2012

Yu Mengsun, the founder of aviation biomedical engineering studies in China. Yu Chunhong/for China Daily

Yu Mengsun has dedicated himself to improving the flight safety of air force pilots in a more than 50-year career. Wang Ru reports.

In 2010 and 2011, 75-year-old Yu Mengsun twice reached the 5,374-meter Ganbala Radar Station on the Qinghai-Tibet plateau, the world's highest manually operated radar station.

He did so to check the health condition of air force soldiers and conduct his research on the plateau's oxygen supply in heavy storms.

It is not the craziest thing Yu has done. In 1972, in order to test safety and get accurate data, Yu risked his life sitting in an ejector seat propelled by a rocket, into the sky.

As an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, and the founder of aviation biomedical engineering studies in China, Yu's research is vital to the development of the air force in China.

Thanks to his groundbreaking inventions and military applications research during his more than 50-year career, the safety of generations of military pilots has been enhanced.

"Science will finally smile on you, if you don't cheat her," Yu says.

He was born in Shanghai, in March 1936. At 15, he attended a military college, then studied at the Medical College of Nanjing University, before he was transferred to the Air Force Military Medical School.

After graduating in 1954, he joined an air force unit as an assistant surgeon. Since 1955, he has been working at the Air Force Institute of Aviation Medicine.

When he was an intern at the institute, a teacher showed him an electric hearing device made by Siemens, one of only two in China, imported from Germany.

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