Artificial gills - how?

Discussion in 'Architecture & Engineering' started by CEngelbrecht, Dec 21, 2017.

  1. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    We don't breathe compressed air underwater either, technically. The air in the tank is compressed but the regulator delivers that air to us at ambient pressure.
     
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  3. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    Yeah, I know, fair enough, but you get my point.
     
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  5. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    I do get your point.

    I mainly dive in cold (PNW) water so hanging out for more time that I can easily get with scuba isn't something I'm looking to do.

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  7. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    Even in a near future, where you don't need to carry a heavy steel tank on your back, that has to be filled before each dive? Where you can just pop on a helmet to go service the seafood pods? Or pop on that helmet, if you need to evacuate a sinking submarine?

    Come on, think Jules Verne here.

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  8. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    The problems of pressure and physiology far exceed the problems of gas storage and/or production. (Unless you are talking about 30 feet or less.) For example, that picture you posted is impractical not due to lack of gas, but due to the problems of diving hundreds of feet (and living in a pressurized environment.)
     
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  9. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    Yeah, I know, fair enough. Maybe if it was technically possible, somebody would've invented it already.

    I've been wondering about this ever since I read about Harrison Okene being trapped in a sunken boat for two and a half days. If he could just pop on a helmet doing all the work for him, he could've gotten out himself (and then would've needed a life raft, obviously).
     
  10. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    But again, at those depths, the decompression would have killed him even if he had the helmet. (Unless he got out almost instantly - and you don't need any kind of a helmet to get out as the boat's going down.)
     
  11. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    Well, he didn't, so... Maybe, if he had had such a device, he could've gotten out after the boat had settled on the bottom at 100 feet, still keeping within safe deco limits, as an onboard dive computer guided him up. (I know, blah. There were also sharks in those waters.)

    It just sounds like a gismo almost within reach, with a million applications. The next step after Gagnan and Cousteau.
     
  12. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    It would certainly be nice to be able to go deeper, stay longer, and not have decompression obligations but regardless of the technology, the decompression obligation isn't going to go away.

    You can do saturation diving and then live in a bell for the duration but you will have a long decompression period before you can get out of the bell on the surface.

    Rebreathers reduce the need for some of the bulk, don't blow bubbles and allow for longer and deeper bottom times but they are dangerous as well. Just over a year ago, a friend of mine who was using a rebreather died at 300 feet while diving a wreck in the Great Lakes.

    He had no medical emergency and made up up to 100 fsw before dropping back down to 300 fsw. It was either too much O2 or too little or CO2 buildup. Once you pass out, your drown basically. You could use a full face mask but the result is the same, it just might be delayed a bit.

    The CO2 sensors haven't been successfully developed for rebreathers yet. The problem with rebreather diving is that everything that can kill you comes without warning. You just pass out.
     
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  13. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    I don't know who you are talking about or the details but you can come up from 100 fsw to the surface without any gadget if you have air in your lungs.
     
  14. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    This guy was a ship's cook that went down off the coast of Nigeria and got trapped in an air pocket. Got out by highly trained salvage divers two and half days later, which then then took him decompressing on their vessel for two and half days more. It was widely reported some years back.



    No diving training, they gave him a crash course in breathing from a full face mask. So, maybe such a device could be used by anyone off hand in such emergencies. A passenger jet sinking, people put on a helmet.

    I know, it's never gonna be that simple. But such a thing would have a million applications, if it could ever be made to work.
     
  15. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    It's not that practical and in most cases isn't needed. You would have to already have it on the airplane (for instance). As it is, you could have a mask, small "pony" bottle and regulator and do the same thing without having to reinvent the wheel.
     
  16. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Some (quite common) fish must breathe air. Like us, they will drown if denied access to the surface.

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  17. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    The requirement that blood be oxygenated does not necessarily mean breathing.

    Most of why people want to hang out underwater for long times happens in fairly shallow water.
     
  18. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    Ah. That's a whole different approach. How would that work? You hold your breath, but somehow your blood gets oxygenized intravenously? And are the Russians already doing that and stuff?
     
  19. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    It depends on the people and on what you call "fairly shallow". Looking at pretty fish in warm water in the tropics, yes.

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  20. CEngelbrecht Registered Senior Member

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    Anything within the first 100 feet, I'm game.
     

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