Thursday 21 August 2014

4 Suprising facts about scuba diving you may not know

I was talking randomly with a friend not so long ago about Cling Film.

Exciting, I hear you say!!! Well, as a general topic of conversation, no it probably isn't but I did learn some interesting information which has certainly made my life much easier.

Did you know that there are small buttons on the side of the box for your roll of cling film that says "press here"? If you press, the box pushes inwards and holds the roll steady inside the box while you peel a sheet off. For my 40 odd years of life, I have never understood why cling film had to be so difficult to use and now I realised it wasn't. It's just me.

So, it got me to thinking about other bits of kit I use all the time and probably don't know enough about and having done a bit of research, here are a few interesting bits of information about scuba diving that you may not know

Tiny bit of Temper

We are all taught that our Scuba Diving masks should have lenses made of Tempered Glass because, when it
girl tries on a mask for scuba diving made from tempered glass
is tempered, it is stronger than normal glass and this is needed when you are descending to the elevated pressures underwater.

Did you know that Tempering the glass puts the outer surface into compression, while the inner surface is put into tension?

This stress means that, if the glass were to break, it would not break into jagged shards like normal glass would but instead, crumble into small granule-like chunks, making it safer for you!

Not all Nitrogen Bubbles are Bad

Wetsuits have been around since the1950s, developing from fragile suits to the more robust hybrid foam neoprene suits we see today.

Foam neoprene is a synthetic rubber that contains small Nitrogen Gas bubbles and it is these bubbles that are responsible for the thermal properties (and increased buoyancy) of a wetsuit. As we go deeper, the Nitrogen bubbles are compressed and we lose heat and buoyancy.

Breathing is Dehydrating

With every breath we take, we exhale a lot of moisture. If you have ever exhaled onto a mirror, you will see all the moisture fog the glass.

At rest we lose approximately 17.5ml of water with each breath and when we exercise, it can be up to 4 times that amount. Add to this, the dry, filtered air that we use when Diving and you can see why it is very important to drink plenty of water when we use Scuba.

All Things Being Equal
We are taught from early in our Diving lives that the Valsalva technique is used for equalising ear and sinus air spaces underwater, but did you know there are actualy a plethora of different ways to do the same job.

None are more effective than the other but a combination of options may help if you find you have stubborn ears.

Some options are; Yawning, Swallowing, The Frenzel Manoeuvre, Politzerisation, The Toynbee manoeuvre, the Lowry Technique and the Edmonds Technique. You can google the ones you don't know, as I would be writing for an eternity to cover the others :)

Hopefully, I have surprised you with a few interesting facts that you didn't already know about Scuba Diving. 

Do you have any interesting facts that could surprise us today. Please share them with us in the comments section.

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