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Does Time Really Slow Down during a Frightening Event?

Figure 1

Measuring temporal resolution during a fearful event.

(a) When a digit is alternated slowly with its negative image, it is easy to identify. (b) As the rate of alternation speeds, the patterns fuse into a uniform field, indistinguishable from any other digit and its negative. (c) The perceptual chronometer is engineered to display digits defined by rapidly alternating LED lights on two 8×8 arrays. The internal microprocessor randomizes the digits and can display them adjustably from 1–166 Hz. (d) The Suspended Catch Air Device (SCAD) diving tower at the Zero Gravity amusement park in Dallas, Texas (www.gojump.com). Participants are released from the apex of the tower and fall backward for 31 m before landing safely in a net below.

Figure 1

doi: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0001295.g001