DDC Blog

Wetsuit Materials And How To Pick The Right One

Before purchasing a wetsuit be familiar with the materials and designs utilized in making wetsuits, and figure out what kind of diving you do.

How a wetsuit works

Wetsuits are made of neoprene rubber, a closed-cell foam that traps millions of tiny gas bubbles within its structure. Unlike open-cell foam (i.e., a sponge), water won’t saturate neoprene, but the gas bubbles tend to give the material a lot of inherent buoyancy. When you put on awetsuit, your 98.6-degree body temperature warms the gas bubbles in the neoprene, which act as insulation. This, combined with a snug ft, minimizes the amount of water that enters the suit and keeps body heat from escaping.

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Ultimate Diver Training from Ocean Corp

You live to dive because you enjoy the beauty and mystery of the underwater world. You love being able to see nature's intriguing marine life up close and personal. Having a job and the financial rewards it brings lets you enjoy the good things in life like scuba diving. Have you ever thought about combining the two? Diving and earning a living doing it. This article will show you how easy getting started on that path is.

For decades, Ocean Corporation has been teaching commercial diving skills to the most passionate of divers, enabling them to become the Ultimate Diver. These divers are an elite group. Their underwater office is deeper than most recreational divers ever venture and is both a challenging and rewarding work environment. They perform construction, inspection, repairs and salvage on the world’s underwater infrastructure, and their missions include working in inland, open-water and offshore dive operations.

What is Ultimate Diver Training

With the Ultimate Diver Training you get the hands on instruction and skill set you need in order to thrive. And you get it from the best instructors in the business. They are former commercial and military divers who teach you the essentials with no fluff. You will master:

• air diving
• mixed-gas and saturation diving
• open water diving
• deep water diving
• contaminated environment diving
• underwater nondestructive testing
• operating remote vehicles
• the use of decompression chambers
• underwater welding
• rigging
• offshore safety and survival skills
• first aid

How to make it happen

The life of a commercial diver can be challenging. But it is very rewarding. Would you have what it takes to join their ranks? Think you can become the Ultimate Diver? If so, the Ultimate Diver Training program can provide you with the knowledge and skill set to be the best of the best - a commercial diver. And Ocean Corporation is the school that can mold you into one.

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Secrets to Saving Air

Do you consistently run through your gas supply faster than other divers on the boat? Do you frequently have to end the dive before the rest of the group? What's going on? And what can you do about it?
First, you can stop beating yourself up over it. People are different. Those with slower metabolisms will — other factors being equal — use less oxygen. Small divers have to use less energy than big ones to swim forward, so they also use less oxygen. Nature doesn't distribute her gifts equally, and you may never be the stingiest sipper of gas on the boat.
On the other hand, most of us can reduce our gas consumption and thereby extend our dives. We can be better, even if we can't be the best. Typically, divers waste air in one or more of these three ways:
By leaking it before it gets to their lungs, thanks to free-flowing octos and worn out O-rings.

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Oceana embarks on 10-week expedition to explore deep-sea areas in Malta

Today Oceana launched its second expedition to document previously unexplored marine areas in Malta as part of the LIFE BaĦAR for N2K project. Scientists from several countries including Malta will research underwater caves, sand banks and reefs in order to provide the Maltese government with enough data to identify new Sites of Community Importance under Natura 2000, a network that gathers together areas of high ecological importance in the European Union.

This year, improvements to technical equipment have been incorporated to enhance the performance of the campaign team’s work. Such improvements, including the use of underwater scooters, will now allow divers to move faster and be able to spend more time documenting secluded caves. Additionally, a boat equipped with a multi-beam sonar will work in parallel to survey the underwater terrain. The sonar will also serve as a vital tool for scientists to be more precise when choosing research spots and will help increase the efficiency of Oceana’s Remotely Operated Robot (ROV), which is able to reach 1,000 metres deep.

“We are very excited about the final leg of our at-sea work in Malta. Last year’s findings include large coral reefs, undiscovered caves at great depths and species that were rare or had never been found in this part of the Mediterranean. Discovering so many ecologically-valuable features in a country famous for its diving spots proves that the true abundance of the sea is yet to be fully uncovered. The protection of these areas will allow for a better conservation of Malta’s rich marine heritage and eventually a healthier Mediterranean”, said Ricardo Aguilar, expedition leader and research director at Oceana in Europe.

Both expeditions will sum up a total of 120 days of intense work at sea on board Oceana’s research catamaran, the Ranger. In 2015, the field work lasted 52 days and included 106 dives carried out by the ROV and divers. The images gathered are still being analysed and, together with this year’s findings, will serve as the groundwork for the creation of marine protected areas.

LIFE BaĦAR for N2K project is co-financed by the EU LIFE+ Funding Programme and led by the Environment and Resources Authority in collaboration with the Maltese Ministry for Sustainable Development, the Environment and Climate Change, the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture, the University of Malta and Oceana.

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Solo Diving Skills: Out of Gas Solutions

Part of any solo diving certification includes instruction on all the additional equipment that solo divers are expected to carry. Without a buddy to help you out underwater, you need to be completely self-sufficient throughout your dive. This means carrying a range of backup equipment. Top of the list, as one might expect, is a backup air supply.

Is it likely that you will run out of air? Not if you have prepared thoroughly for your dive. However, equipment malfunction can occur. You might experience a problem with your cylinder, regulator or pressure gauge, once you’re beneath the surface. You might miscalculate your air consumption rate, or forget to check your gauges frequently, and find yourself out of air. What do you do?

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Under Pressure: The Basic Consequences of Depth and Pressure in Scuba Diving

How does pressure change underwater and how do pressure changes effect aspects of scuba diving such as equalization, buoyancy, bottom time, and the risk of decompression sickness? Review the fundamentals of pressure and scuba diving, and discover a concept no one told me during my open water course: that pressure changes more rapidly the closer a diver is to the surface.

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Vest-Style vs Back Inflation BCDs: Pros and Cons

Vest-Style vs Back Inflation BCDs: Pros and Cons

When purchasing your scuba gear, one important decision to make is whether to buy a back inflation or vest style BCD. Many new divers have never heard of a back-inflation BCD, so here's the low-down.

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Can You Scuba Dive With Glass or Contact Lenses?

Can You Scuba Dive With Glass or Contact Lenses?

Like many divers, I am completely dependent on corrective lenses for survival. I have terrible vision, and without my contact lenses I would be unable to drive, walk down the street, or find my way around my own apartment. While some extreme activities require perfect vision (being a fighter pilot, for example), scuba diving isn't one of them. Divers with poor vision have a variety of options available to help them see underwater.

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Northern Galapagos Islands home to world's largest shark biomass

Northern Galapagos Islands home to world's largest shark biomass

Worldwide, overfishing has reduced the biomass of most sharks and other large predatory fishes by more than 90 percent -- even in remote areas. The findings detailed by CDRS and National Geographic Society researchers in PeerJ are significant because the presence of these top predators indicates a healthy marine ecosystem. Moreover, the data amassed over two years of rigorous research will add to a growing body of literature about the role of top predators in marine ecosystems.

"The islands of Darwin and Wolf are jewels in the crown of the Galapagos because of the sheer abundance of sharks and other top predators," said Pelayo Salinas de Leon, the paper's lead author and senior marine ecologist at CDRS.

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Archaeologist wants to build NC's first underwater dive park

KURE BEACH, NC (WECT) -

Deputy State Archaeologist Billy Ray Morris says he is passionate about the world under the sea.

He has been diving since he was 10-years-old, and enjoys seeing others dive, too.

Morris says that his experiences turning underwater sites into archaeological parks has been wildly successful.

He has worked on underwater dive parks in both Bermuda and Florida, and now he has hopes of bringing one to North Carolina.

North Carolina does not have a dive park, so he would like to establish the first one in Kure Beach where the Condor, an iron hull that sank on it's maiden run in 1964.

“By turning Condor into a park such as that, with mooring buoys, setting up dive slates that people can get their hands on, they can look at one of the best preserved Blockade Runners in the world,” said Morris. “This is something I am truly passionate about.”

There are hoops to jump through, and a way to go about getting permission to construct an underwater dive park, and that’s what Morris is working on now.

“I am updating our site maps, locating where we want to put the mooring buoys, and creating the map that will go on the slate,” said Morris, “I am also starting the process of talking with the coast guard and other regulatory agencies we need to deal with. I also hope to talk to local diving shops.”

Morris believes that by creating an underwater dive park where the Condor is, it will prevent boats from dropping their anchor into the wreckage, and possibly losing it. With the park, they would be able to hook up to buoys on site, and spend the day.

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HUMANOID ROBOT CAN DIVE DEEP UNDERWATER, EXPLORING REEFS AND SHIPWRECKS

HUMANOID ROBOT CAN DIVE DEEP UNDERWATER, EXPLORING REEFS AND SHIPWRECKS

While a human diver is constrained by pesky things like air and pressure when doing underwater research or excavations, a robot can stay underwater for much longer, collecting samples in hostile underwater environments.

OceanOne was tested at the archeological site of the shipwreck La Luneoff the coast of France. La Lune, a flagship that sank in the Mediterranean in 1664. It lies under 300 feet of water, far beyond the reach of recreational SCUBA divers, who limit themselves to 130 feet.

Unlike submarines, which have limited ability to take delicate samples, and have tools that require extensive training to use, OceanOne is controlled by haptic joysticks, letting its operators feel the lightness or heaviness of whatever object it's holding, thus giving researchers a much more hands-on feel.

“You can feel exactly what the robot is doing,” Oussama Khatib, leader of the OceanOne project, said. “It’s almost like you are there; with the sense of touch you create a new dimension of perception.”

While its first test was on a shipwreck, the initial inspiration for OceanOne was to create something that would allow researchers explore the extraordinarily deep (and relatively unstudied) coral reefs of the Red Sea.

Other researchers are working on similar technology, like robot hands that can be attached to submersibles. And robots already have a place in underwater exploration, discovering monsters and shipwrecks. There are a few smaller ocean-going drones also in the works but none that have the light tough of OceanOne.

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Protection of our marine life needs more than marine protected areas, we need to make it resilient

Protection of our marine life needs more than marine protected areas, we need to make it resilient

Our oceans and coasts are changing rapidly due to human impacts. But our very existence depends on the resources and functions that their biodiversity and productive habitats provide. Learning to manage the habitats and biodiversity within our oceans and coasts is one of the greatest challenges of this century.

Management of our coasts typically takes the approach of establishing Marine Protected Areas, controlling fishing, or regulating industrial activity. But in the face of the increasing threat of climate change we need to take measures that increase the resilience of our oceans and coasts to ensure they survive into the future (Ecological resilience is "the capacity of an ecosystem to absorb repeated disturbances or shocks and adapt to change without fundamentally switching to an alternative stable state").

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Researcher Sheds Light On 'Man-eating' Squid; Finds Them Timid, Non-threatening

Recent news reports about scuba divers off San Diego being menaced by large numbers of Humboldt's or jumbo squid have raised the ire of University of Rhode Island biologist Brad Seibel. As a leading expert on the species who has dived with them several times, he calls the reports "alarmist" and says the squid's man-eating reputation is seriously overblown.

For years Seibel has heard stories claiming that Humboldt squid will devour a dog in minutes and could kill or maim unsuspecting divers.

"Private dive companies in Mexico play up this myth by insisting that their customers wear body armor or dive in cages while diving in waters where the squid are found. Many also encourage the squid's aggressive behavior by chumming the waters. I didn't believe the hype, but there was still some doubt in my mind, so I was a little nervous getting into the water with them for the first time," Seibel said.

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Physics of the 'bends': New study helps explain decompression sickness

As you go about your day-to-day activities, tiny bubbles of nitrogen come and go inside your tissues. This is not a problem unless you happen to experience large changes in ambient pressure, such as those encountered by scuba divers and astronauts. During large, fast pressure drops, these bubbles can grow and lead to decompression sickness, popularly known as "the bends."

A study in the Journal of Chemical Physics, which is published by the American Institute of Physics (AIP), may provide a physical basis for the existence of these bubbles, and could be useful in understanding decompression sickness.

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Why Are Some Divers So Obsessed With Wreck Diving?

There's a reason so many divers are obsessed with wreck diving! Shipwrecks are mysterious and exciting, and encountering one on the ocean floor lends a diver an almost indefineable sense of discovery. Shipwrecks can be beautiful and horrifying at the same time, and wreck diving  is often a very evocative and emotional experience. If you feel that it's time to add a new dimension to your diving, to try something a bit more challenging, and wreck diving might be just what you are looking for.

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Great Barracuda

The Great barracuda is amongst the top predators in their environment and use very highly developed smell and vision senses to locate their prey. When attacking, the barracuda will charge at fast speed (approximately 12 ms-1) and ram their target. They then unleash the power of their jaws which allows them to slice through their prey, even those larger than the barracuda itself. The jaw of the barracuda is formed in such a way that the upper and lower jaws form ‘rows’ of teeth. The top jaw has smaller serrated teeth on the outside and larger canines on the inside, and the teeth of the lower jaw fit between them when the mouth is shut. When the jaw closes this acts like scissors and slices through prey with ease.

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Jellyfish stings: heat better than cold

Researchers find overwhelming evidence that applying hot packs or immersing in hot water is much better for treating jellyfish stings than cold water which was previously widely recommended.

Jellyfish stings are responsible for more deaths than shark attacks each year. Even “mild” stings can hurt for hours to days and leave lasting scars. According to some estimates, more than 150 million people are stung by jellyfish each year.

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Scientists Have Discovered a 600-Mile Coral Reef in the Amazon River

Scientists Have Discovered a 600-Mile Coral Reef in the Amazon River

Among the world’s rivers, the Amazon reigns with the heaviest crown.

It begins in Peru, less than 75 miles from the Pacific shore, among the tiny glacial streams that trickle through the Andes. Those creeks become a river, which joins a network of other capillaries draining more than 3 million square-miles of South American land—water from mountains, foothills, and the world’s largest rainforest uniting to form a monumental flow that thunders clear across the continent until it gushes into the Atlantic. When measured by discharge, it is the largest river in the world: Every day, one-fifth of all the water that flows from all Earth’s rivers into all Earth’s oceans does it here, as the Amazonian flume. Nutrients in the spill support oceanic algae blooms hundreds of miles from shore.

Now, researchers have added yet another jewel to the river’s crown. A team of Brazilian and American scientists have discovered a new sponge and coral reef more than 600 miles long (1,000 kilometers), located at the mouth of the Amazon River. The reef appears to sprawl across more than 3,600 square miles of ocean floor at the edge of the South American continental shelf, from the southern tip of French Guiana to Brazil’s Maranhão State.

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A Conversation With Whales

The New York Times Op-Docs and Annapurna Pictures are presenting a virtual-reality film, "The Click Effect," about the free-diving researchers in this Opinion essay. To view it, download the NYT VR app on your mobile device.

I HELD MY BREATH AND SWAM DEEPER, 10, 20, 30 feet. I heard a thunderous crack, then another, so loud they vibrated my chest. Below my kicking feet, two sperm whales emerged from the shadows, each as long as a school bus.

The cracking was coming from the whales; it’s a form of sonar called echolocation that species of dolphins, whales and other cetaceans use to “see” underwater. With these vocalizations, called clicks, the whales were snapping three-dimensional images of my body, and those of my diving companions, from the inside out — scanning us to see if we were a threat, or if we were food.

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Divers return to famous Antikythera wreck to hunt for treasures

GEMMA SMITH is grinning like a child on Christmas morning. “It could be anything!” she says as our boat speeds past the rugged grey cliffs of Antikythera, a tiny Greek island midway between the Peloponnese and Crete. We are here to explore one of the world’s most famous shipwrecks, where divers once found an anchient computer.

The day before, the team discovered part of a large object buried beneath a metre of sand; now they are back to find out what it is. After years of preparation, there’s a feeling that today is going to be big.

The ship that sank here was a hefty wooden vessel, sailing west from Asia Minor towards Rome when it smashed against the island’s cliffs in the 1st century BC. It was discovered in 1900 by sponge divers, who salvaged the site under the direction of Greek archaeologists: the first scientific investigation of a shipwreck. They found bronze and marble statues, gold jewellery, ornate furniture, and gorgeous ceramics and glassware. Most intriguing was an anchent geared device - the Antikythera mechanism. Now understood to have been a clockwork computer, it was used to predict and display the movements of the sun, moon and planets in the sky (see “The solar system in a box“). “It is a symbolic place,” says Theotokis Theodoulou, an archaeologist at Greece Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities. “This is the cradle of underwater archaeology.”

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U/W Bike Race

eventsiconJoin us on July 4th for this annual event benefitting the Children's Mile of Hope.

Lionfish Tournament

eventsiconWe need your help to make Carteret County's 5th Annual "If you Can't Beat 'em, Eat 'em" Spearfishing Tournament a success! This Tournament is a joint effort between Discovery Diving and Eastern Carolina Artificial Reef Association (ECARA).

Treasure Hunt

eventsiconFood, prizes, diving, and fun! Proceeds benefit the Mile Hope Children's Cancer Fund and DAN's research in diving safety.

ECARA Event

2013Join us June 3rd, 2017 in support of the East Carolina Artificial Reef Association.  Click here for more info on this great event and how you can help to bring more Wrecks to the Graveyard of the Atlantic.