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Air ionization is a normal phenomenon in the vicinity of electrical equipment. These atmospheric ions apparently have a significant effect upon man's performance. In general, the behavioral observations of past studies indicate that negative ions normalize subjects under some stress and positive ions have debilitating effects. The experimental studies done to date, however, have been deficient in instrumentation and control of interacting variables, and lacked a rational framework. This paper offers a first approximation of a rational framework for interpreting previous experiments and it is hoped it will generate a systematic series of experiments. The hypothesis offered is concerned with ion effects on adrenocortical secretion and a number of pertinent studies are considered from this standpoint.