ECOAQUA is pushing forward: rebreathers technology


From September 28th to October 2nd of 2015 members of the ECOAQUA University Institute from the ULPGC were trained to employ the Submatix Mini Quantum rebreathers, using three units recently acquired by the EU EcoAqua Project. This first training will allow our researchers to to work at 40 m-depth zone. A second training to work at higher depths (70m)  will  be held in October 2016, enlarging EcoAqua research capacity.

Rebreather technology offers three main advantages over classical diving approach: a) more efficient use of respired gases, b) optimized decompression times for deeper dives, and c) silent operations. Therefore, rebreather divers are able to approach marine life for longer periods and more closely, without disturbing   behavioural patterns.


Figure 1. Members of ECOAQUA technical dive unit with the course instructor, Jean François André (second from the left) from Hippoconsulting, France.


The acquired equipment will increase ECOAQUA research quality, allowing the study of poorly understood marine sensitive habitats using better survey techniques for marine species, while improving divers’ safety. Rebreathers will soon become a must to study deeper habitats and perform robust studies of marine life and, specially, to improve divers safety. The project EcoAqua will thus improve the ecological assessment services provided by the ULPGC through the implementation of this technology, increasing the diving potential of their researchers to explore marine areas poorly studied.


Figure 2. Members of ECOAQUA dive unit during the rebreather training in Gran Canaria waters