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for Preventive Medicine

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Research

In addition to the current key issues of the start page a large number of research projects are continuously being carried out. Here we will shortly introduce you to our areas of research.


Department A1: Applied Health Promotion

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Just like in civil society digitalization and mechanization combined with unhealthy individual habits have led to palpable results in the armed forces, i.e. reduced individual resilience and performance as well as an increase of noncommunicable diseases.

Department A 1 is tasked with the development of tailor-made health promotion for military and civilian personnel of the Bundeswehr. It researches attractors, barriers, and incentives for health-promoting behavior. In addition, scientific support is developed and provided for all measures of occupational health management.

Contact: Oberstarzt Dr. Ulrich Rohde


Department A2: Physical Performance

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Basic military tasks such as maneuver under fire, casualty rescue, or military operations in urban terrain put high demands on soldier’s fitness and resilience. Demands are even higher, when external mission related stressors (heavy loads, exhaustion, mission duration, wet conditions, etc.) are factored in.

To expand the body of knowledge about interactions of performance, training, and mission related factors Department A 2 conducts field and laboratory research using anthropometric methods, portable measuring systems (e.g. for capturing parameters of circulation, respiration, and metabolism), and specially developed systems for measuring muscular strength.

Scientific output ranges from large scale data collection (one goal is the establishment of a “fitness registry”), to deriving recommendations for personnel selection and training up to the development and evaluation of performance tests (Basic-Fitness-Test, Basic-Military-Fitness-Tool).

Contact: Oberstarzt Dr. Ulrich Rohde


Department A3: Performance Psychology

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Performance begins in the mind. Psychological performance is key to accomplishing mentally as well as physically demanding tasks. Motivation, resilience, vigilance, and mindfulness are but a few factors that influence performance at work and are critical to mission success.

Department A 3 researches psychological influences on performance, e.g. predictors of performance, early detection of performance decrements, and cognitive skill training. Acquisition and analyses of psychological and psychophysiological data (e.g. eye movement, reaction times, fatigue, working memory performance during physical and psychological stress) form a solid base for in-depth research.

Contact: Dr. Alexander Witzki


Department A4: Environmental Ergonomics and Clothing

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Deployments all over the globe subject soldiers to unfamiliar climatic or geographic stressors (heat, cold, altitude etc.) while existing threats may demand the use of heavy and insulating protective gear (ballistic vests, CBRNE protection etc.).

Department A 4 conducts field and realistic laboratory tests in an environmental (climate and altitude) simulation chamber to acquire parameters of temperature regulation and fluid balance (e.g. skin and core temperatures, fluid loss), parameters of circulation and metabolism as well as changes in performance for further analyses.
Scientific output ranges from mission oriented recommendations for training and deployment to the development of new technologies for microclimate cooling.

Contact: Dr. Karl Jochen Glitz


Department A5: Medical Ergonomics and Applied Computer Science

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The traditional research field of medical and technical ergonomics encompasses studies on specific stressors from military equipment and technology on soldiers as well as their health and performance related impact (e.g. ensuring the proper supply of fresh air and climatization of armored vehicles). Enormous advancements in battlefield technology have led to increasingly complex and integrated systems carried and used by the individual soldier.

As a result, department A 5’s research agenda has changed and expanded to entail new areas such as remote monitoring of physiological functions, wearable computing in general, as well as augmented and virtual reality.

The computer science section develops applied hard- and software systems for the whole Institute such as research methods and data acquisition tools. In addition, it administers a proprietary database system and manages all research data collected in Division A (raw data, primary data, and aggregated parameters).

Contact: Dr. Sevilay Akcöltekin


Department B4: Epidemiology of Performance and Health

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Key research areas of Epidemiology of Performance and Health are the incidence of health conditions and their causes or results. Of special interest are the impact of individual behavior or trends in society such as unfavorable lifestyle habits or lack of physical exercise.

Its expertise will play a vital role for the further development of the Medical Service in the cours of digitalization of the Health Services and the establishment of fitness and health registries.

Contact: Oberfeldarzt Dr. Melanie Schmeil


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