Fascinating! Drivers wearing eye sensors. 20 years ago this took place...an in depth trucking study on driver fatigue in sleeper berths, by Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Virginia Tech Transportation Institute and Harvard Medical. Get this. It featured a scientific method that involved 13 teams and 30 single drivers on two specially equipped tractors, each outfitted with hi -tech data acquisition systems. This system included sensors, cameras, a nine button dash panel, and a nightcap sleep monitoring device with eye lid sensors that was worn to bed to measure REM sleep quality. Crazy cool mad science at work. These systems helped to collect important driver performance data not only at night, but seems to measure more inclusive driving data to include unusual critical incidences, near collisions, driver distractions, judgement, maneuvers, hazards, errors, etc. Did you guess that team drivers were more careful and considerate of their co-driver in the berth, therefore their data indicated less aggressive driving and lower incidences?
Well, if your eyes don't glass over from the conversion factor measurements & variations of ANOVA tables, the tables analyzing alertness ratings are interesting to read as they are compiled by both tech data collection as well as driver surveys on how they feel. This study measured factors of vibration, sound pressure level, illumination, and temperature. A triaxial piezoelectric accelerometer embedded in the mattress measured whole body vibration, but type of mattress was omitted. What an important variable missing from this 230 page study. Why wasn't the mattress construction mentioned? If they would measure the effects of vibrations on building fatigue and if a specific construction within the build of a mattress was indicated, wouldn't one mattress type positively alter how well a driver feels, while another cause more fatigue? Would a special mattress combat vibrations, muting the energy transfer effects, yielding a better nights rest?
Our Fountainbleau cool gel, all foam, no springs, anti-vibration mattress is one part of the solution. Perhaps not included in this 20 year old study, but we know about vibration issues and designed our mattress accordingly. To accomplish this, we avoided springs and included what NASA knew; memory foam dampens vibrations. Stay tuned to a side by side comparison between spring mattresses and our cool gel memory foam truck mattress. We think a future independent, scientific study will help us to engineer the next level, of new, anti-fatigue truck mattress designs.