A Look At The Newest Diving Tech

Scuba diving is like any field in the modern age; there’s always someone working on developing something new to make things more safe, easier, or just more accessible for people. As you dive from your Thailand Liveaboard, think about the work that went into your diving gear; all the safety measure, the standards, the tests, and be thankful for it. There’s more developments on the way though, and some that’s already arrived.

One of the more notable recent development is more towards the scientific side of diving. More than just allowing you to enjoy your hobby, diving also lets scientists study the ocean which, according to a popular saying and some of the authorities on marine life like the US’s National Ocean Service, is barely explored, to the point that we know more about the moon than we do of the oceans.

Back to the point, recent developments in scuba diving tech has allowed scientists to reach the mesphotic zone, 200 to 500 feet underwater, which is where some of the ocean’s less studied species reside. It’s not anglerfish deep (about 1500m), but it’s still an improvement. The problem comes with studying the fish here, as trying to bring them up to the surface can be, problematic, to say the least. The latest piece of tech from the California Academy of Sciences and Monterey Bay Aquarium, however, deals with that issue.

Dubbed the Sub CAS or the Submersible Chamber for Ascending Specimens, the 2ft long device is basically a long, clear tube that holds the fish. Once the tube and its content go up to 180ft, the cylinder is placed inside another tube, before a bubble is blown into the lid, which creates an air gap between the two cylinders. This air then expands as the Sub CAS and the divers ascend to 100 ft. At that point,  they hand the specimen to the biologists, who then slowly release the pressurized bubble over the course of several days, which allow the fish to acclimate to surface pressure without succumbing to barotrauma which causes their stomachs to explode out of their mouths and their eyes to pop out. Yes, that’s as gross and as lethal as you think it is.

It’s a long process, but one that’s already proven effective, as  fish were brought up to the surface and studied by the California Academy of Sciences, who put them on display in the Steinhart Aquarium exhibit dubbed, Twilight Zone: Deep Reefs Revealed.

Bart Shepherd, the Senior Director of the Steinhart Aquarium says that deep sea dives let them see ecosystems that no one has seen before, which they wanted to show to people. This life, most will never get the chance to see, and it’s important they get focus as they’re under the same threat that their cousins are under, closer to the surface.

The SubCAS is allowing for the study of species rarely seen before, which is just a good sign of how useful technology can be when it’s used right. We need to know more about the oceans, since we, as a species, rely on it so much. Think about this from your Thailand Liveaboard; if you look up to space, you’ll be looking at something you know more about, than the water; the former something you’ll probably never reach, the latter something  you come into contact to and rely upon daily.