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Discovery Mk VI, the Scuba Diving Rebreather

Back in 2008 when I took my Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) Open Water Diver course, none has been mentioned or taught about scuba diving Rebreathers since they weren’t intended for use by recreational divers. They are the state of the art in scuba gear. They let divers stay underwater for hours, silently, like the “fish men” that Jacques Cousteau envisioned at the dawn of the age of underwater. What they do is they recirculate the exhaled gas for reuse and do not discharge it to the atmosphere or water.

Having been reserved for deep diving enthusiasts and military divers in the past, Poseidon Diving Systems of Sweden is bringing this month Rebreathers to the recreational diving community. After it took merely three years to develop, Discovery Mk VI - their latest closed-circuit Rebreather (CCR) - uses advanced electronics and sensor technologies, buckled with a built-in expert-system software to deliver the most enjoyable experiences of the underwater world: safer diving with less risk of decompression sickness (DCS), no bubbles and quieter to allow you to experience the marine life up close and longer dives meaning never having to ascend before your buddies again. Closed-circuit Rebreathers can give you seven times as much dive time as standard scuba equipment, regardless of depth.

The all-around tech guy Karl Shreeves at PADI and a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has tested out the Discovery Mk VI last October, and was very pleased with the test dive. Setup took a mere 10 minutes, compared with an hour for conventional Rebreathers. Karl was left with the impression that this may indeed be the first CCR for casual recreational divers.

While I hope this would be the mainstream development for the recreational scuba diving community - and seems it is in the near future as some label it the “secret revolution” of scuba diving - recreational divers have to wait for the launch of this innovation. No price quote has been made public yet, but with its innovative technologies in mind, I expect it to be quite high. For those who aren’t that patient, they can get their hands on Rebreathers currently found in the market such as the Megalodon, Inspiration Vision, Ouroboros, and Sport Kiss.

Update: the price of the Discovery Mk VI on the Poseidon website is around US$ 5,800 excluding taxes.

Read more on the Discovery Mk VI at the Poseidon Website.
Check out the article by Karl Shreeves at the IEEE Spectrum magazine’s January 2009 issue.

Karl Shreeves test diving the Discovery Mk VI

Karl Shreeves test diving the Discovery Mk VI - IEEE Spectrum

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