Gear Check Air Systems
Optima gets a makeover May 2007
Dive Rite has tweaked its O2ptima FX closed-circuit rebreather with features that add flexibility and comfort. The new design allows for
using 4-liter steel, 2-liter steel or 2-liter aluminum tanks. A new cover eases access to the scrubber canister and tanks, and quick-release
clips ease access to the top or bottom of the unit without taking off the cover. Weight pockets in the top hold up to five pounds apiece. The
scrubber uses Micropore’s ExtendAir cartridges, which provide up to three hours of diving. Over-the-shoulder counterlungs can be
positioned by the diver for maximum comfort and ease of breathing. Juergensen Marine’s Hammerhead electronics monitor PO2, set points
and onboard decompression information. The unit has two completely redundant handset displays, and offers a fourth cell for use with off-
board computers. The rebreather can be fitted to any harness and wing combination that fits the diver and the dive plan. www.diverite.com.
Nitrox to go April 2007
Filling nitrox mixes with precision is no longer a tedious task of juggling tables of pressures and partial pressures with the Voyager system
created by Aerotecnica Coltri and Nuvair. The membrane system is compact enough to install in a dive boat yet delivers gas mixes in
quantities that could meet a dive shop’s needs. Two Nuvair oxygen analyzers ensure accuracy in mixes from 24 to 40 percent oxygen, and
the 7.5-horsepower compressors deliver up to 3,600 pounds-per-square-inch high-pressure output. The accumulator tank holds up to 15
gallons of condensate. Automatic controls and shutoff make add push-button ease to operating the turnkey system. www.nuvair.com.
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Nitrox check is a breeze August 2007
Nitrox is great stuff for keeping a head clear and avoiding the physical blahs that can develop during a day of repetitive diving. But it’s
important to make sure that the oxygen content is correct, and who wants to trust the mix using the same analyzer that the shop used in
testing the mix. Analox as a handy gadget to test it in the O2EII. The unit grips comfortably in the hand. Just turn it on, calibrate it to the
ambient air, crack open the tank valve a bit and push the sensor against the cylinder outlet. Once the percentage on the display stabilizes at
anywhere between 0.1 to 100 percent O2, press the “on” button again to hold the reading. Pressing it a second time clears the display so
another tank can be tested. The small 8-ounce water-resistant unit slips easily into a dive bag and is powered with an easily replaceable 9-
volt battery. Sensors last about four years and are user replaceable as well, allowing a dive to get years of service out of the sensor.
Rethinking rebreathers December 2007
Poseidon has automated many rebreather functions in the new MkVI Discovery model. Its fifth generation rebreather is fully automatic,
allowing divers to focus more on the dive and less on the computer display. Electronics are encased in polymers that are impervious to
saltwater. Sensors measure mixes, with computer controls, the unit replenishes oxygen and diluent gas as needed. Alarms warn of any
malfunction, allowing for a switch to a bailout bottle if needed. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
SofnoDive clears the air January 2009
Correctly filling the Discovery Cis Lunar MkVI rebreather from Poseidon is as easy as popping in a disposable scrubber cartridge now with
the introduction of Molecular Products' SofnoDive 797. The 6-pound / 2.7-kilogram cartridge is pre-packed with dive-grade Sofnolime
soda lime, eliminating the guesswork of refilling the rebreather with the carbon dioxide absorbent. The single-use cartridges are kept sealed,
so they're fresh when they're needed in the field. Factory packing is said by the company to ensure that the soda lime is more consistently
distributed, ensuring optimum performance throughout the dive. It also eliminates having to come in contact with the caustic soda lime and
its dust. The cartridges are being made available though shops that carry Poseidon's rebreathers. www.molecularproducts.com.
Airhead listens, improves December 2008
A head-mounted snorkel drew more than a few comments when it was launched at DEMA '08. The company listened to them and is
bringing out some new options this month. Ozeon's original QV360 is still available of course. It features a dual-hose arrangement that
delivers air through a quad-valve system that is said to keep air fresh and tubes dry, even if it's used while doing somersaults underwater.
As a result of show feedback, it's now offering a single-hose PV360 unit to improve portability and streamline the profile. Ozeon also is
offering the HM100 head-mount without the snorkel, but with its handy attachment hardware for lights and video cameras.
Dry out TUSA's snorkel June 2009
Surface swims on snorkel can get old quick when water splashes down the tube while you're huffing and puffing. TUSA hopes to eliminate
that common problem with its new SP-200 Hyperdry MAX Dry Snorkel. Two independent high-buoyancy floats are incorporated into the
design to quickly seal out water. A large-bore pipe allows for a high volume of air to flow through the three-dimensional pipe, which is
curved to fit comfortably along the head. A detachable two-section swivel provides freedom of movement. The tube is attached to a crystal
silicon flexible neck that further eases movement, and ends in an ortho-designed mouthpiece for comfort. The angled purge valve at the
bottom of the snorkel is designed to eliminate gurgling water and allow bubbles to pass by the face when the snorkel is purged. The SP-200
is available in a wide variety of colors – from black to yellow to pearlescent pink and metallic red – to coordinate with diver's gear.
Poseidon grows in USA January 2010
Poseidon’s Discovery rebreather isn’t new, but its commitment to marketing the unit in the United States, Canada and Mexico is. The
Swedish company began the year by establishing Poseidon Diving Systems Inc., with a warehouse at Woodlands, Texas, and a corporate
office at Los Angeles. The move is intended to support customers and distributors in the Americas, and ease cooperation with training
agencies and their instructors. The Discovery rebreather earned the Best of What’s New Award from “Popular Science” after it was
introduced in November 2008, touted as the world‘s first rebreather for recreational divers. Some 10,000 instructors worldwide have been
certified on the unit. Poseidon hopes the expansion into American markets will further popularize the Discovery and other Poseidon
Eliminate bad air days May 2010
Chances are slim that a tank fill will contain carbon monoxide, but CO is definitely a gas no diver wants to deal with at depth, especially in
the special mixes that enable deep diving. The potentially lethal gas can get pumped into tanks filled with a faulty air compressor or if the
compressor is downwind from a CO source and its CO filter has been overwhelmed. KWJ Engineering has a handy portable sensor called
the Pocket CO Scuba 300 that's designed to allow divers to check tanks for this deadly gas before they jump in the water. Put the
key-sized sensor in a leak-proof bag, and then fill it with air from the tank. Within three minutes it will sense if CO is present in
concentrations as low as 2 parts per million. While the Compressed Gas Association allows for CO concentrations up to 10 ppm, the
National Association of Underwater Instructors recommends limiting CO to 2 ppm in nitrox mixtures. The gauge is shipped with a
leak-proof test bag, laminated instruction card, a storage case and a cylinder of calibration gas that is good for up to three tests in one year.
A dive master kit is available that holds all of these items in a sturdy carrying case. www.kwjengineering.com..