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- faculteit der gedrags- en bewegingswetenschappen ( sectie sensorimotor control )
Resulting from work at TNO Human Factors in Soesterberg I hold a position as extraordinary professor “vestibular motion and attitude perception” at the faculty of Human Movement Sciences of the Vrije Universiteit since April 2010. This follows from research performed in Soesterberg on motion perception, with an emphasis on those motions we perceive with our organs of balance, although the effect of visual motion is of growing interest due to a boost in (computer) display technology, image content, and use. Because we perceive mainly translation when motions change fast, and tilt with slowly changing motions (at least with eyes closed), and because it has not yet been settled how this comes, the title of my position both holds the words “motion” and “attitude”.
At TNO this knowledge is applied to flight, driving, and sailing simulation, the training of pilots to deal with disorientation (which may lead to what is euphemistically called a controlled flight into terrain), postural balance, and all conditions in which motion sickness affects the performance of crew and the comfort of passengers. And, because people without functioning organs of balance do not get sick from motion at all, even not so when induced purely visually (cybersickness), the vestibular part closes the circle again.
At the Vrije Universiteit (HMS/MOVE/ENT), I am focussing on that part of our central nervous system (CNS) responsible for the control of body motion, based on externally acquired PhD projects. This includes the interaction between the different senses (inner ear, eyes and somatosensory system), as well as assumed “knowledge” or “experience” stored in the CNS concerning the functioning of the different subsystems. Besides the basic scientific interest, I am also aiming at clinical applications in the diagnosis and therapy of vertigo and falling in the elderly.