Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Nitrox Diving and Courses

For many years now Enriched Air (Nitrox) has been used by recreational divers all around the world. Majority of recreational training agencies offer 1 day nitrox courses. There is no doubt that diving with nitrox is beneficial. Lower nitrogen loading gives us longer bottom times and generally enriched air makes us less tired after multiple dives. PADI offers Enriched Air Diver course where after completing the course divers may use nitrox up to 40%. Technical Diving International (TDI) goes one step further and offers Advanced Nitrox Diver courses where divers may use up to 100% pure oxygen for added conservatism during their recreational diving and of course this course is a prerequisite for Extended Range Diver Technical course. There are some training agencies like Global Underwater Explorers (GUE) who use EAN32 (Nitrox 32%) as their standard breathing gas for recreational diving (no AIR diving). Standard regulator straight from the box may be used for diving with nitrox up to 40%. Oxygen cleaning is recommended for recreational nitrox use (up to 40%) and mandatory O2 cleaning is required for technical diving where up to 100% O2 may be used. Today all dive computers are nitrox compatible to at least 50% nitrox use and they are user friendly. Some divers may ask if there is additional work to be done prior to nitrox diving and the answer is YES but all we need to do is personally analyse the content of our scuba tank, put the sticker on it and off we go, that is it.

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