Rebreather Dive Training - Rebreather Systems
At Rubicon Diving we offer rebreather training on some of the most advanced and up to date CCR systems in the world including the rEvo, Megaladon, AP Inspiration and Evolution, JJ CCR and Kiss systems.
Why so many systems?
Because unlike open circuit scuba systems, rebreather systems differ from one another in a number of ways.
Whilst all CCR systems have the same structure in terms of a closed breathing loop and a scrubber system that removes CO2 from exhaled air, designs around this vary between manufacturers. Some systems, such as those produced by AP valves, favour a closed architecture, others such as the Megalodon and rEvo favor a more flexible open architecture. Some systems use front mounted counter lungs, others use back mounted lungs. Some systems can be electronically controlled, whilst others are fully manual and use a constant mass flow of Oxygen. This is not to say that one manufacturer’s design is better than another, rather that each is unique and what might best suit you may vary depending upon your particular diving interest, for example the best system for deep or cave diving might not be the best for underwater photography.
These variations in design between different manufacturers means that training on rebreather systems is specific to the unit that is being used. Whilst everyone training on a CCR system will cover similar aspects of rebreather theory, there will also be theory and practical sessions that are specific to the unit you are training on. This is reflected in the ANDI system of rebreather training we follow at Rubicon Diving where students will have assessments that are both general and specific.
rEvo 2 and 3
In March 2008 the Belgian company rEvo Rebreathers began supplying its new electronically controlled Rebreather known as the rEvo. The rEvo is one of the newest closed circuit Rebreathers on the market and is available in either pure electronic of hybrid forms. The electronically controlled rebreather is based on the standard mCCR rEvo and has two 2 independent PPO2 monitors, the rEvodream and the Shearwater Predator.
The Hybrid version of the rEvo has the best of both worlds combining the advantages of a stable mCCR constant mass flow, with a PPO2 controller that tracks the PPO2 towards the divers desired setpoint via an electronically controlled solenoid valve managed by a Shearwater controller.
One of the most innovative aspects of the rEvo rebreather is that it uses an integrated back mounted counter lung system, rather than the over-the-shoulder system favoured by most other rebreather manufacturers. The counter lungs are integrated into the back unit of the rebreather. Many users argue that this back mounted system makes buoyancy and trim control much easier than when using an over-the-shoulder system. In addition, the rEvo also uses an innovative ‘dual scrubber’ system, rather than a single canister. The rEvo’s dual scrubber system provides extended scrubber time and redundancy in case of flooding as both canisters are separate (one in each counter lung).
Also the rEvodream is a special piece of kit that allows redundancy when reading your PO2 as you have at least two separate PO2 reading systems available at all times. The special rEvodream HUD allows clear monitoring of you PO2 levels at all time even under direct sunshine.
Megalodon and COPIS
The Megaladon Closed Circuit Rebreather, often referred to as the ‘Meg’, is manufactured by the Innerspace Corporation in Seattle, USA and is the company’s flagship rebreather. The meg has been in production for over 8 years and there are more than 1000 Megalodon CCR systems in use throughout the world and they have been used as deep as 224m.
The Megalodon CCR has a reputation for reliability and the ability to withstand extreme use. The Meg is more versatile than many other rebreather systems as it uses an open architecture framework rather than the enclosed system favoured by other manufacturers. The open architecture means that the Meg can be integrated with several types of electronic systems, scrubber sizes and types, gas supply cylinders, harness and BC assemblies. The Megalodon has a fully electronic management system which maintains oxygen partial pressure at the level desired by the diver.
The Meg is particularly favoured by cave divers as it can be used as a side mounted system for penetration into extreme enclosed spaces. The system can also double up as a twin system for CCR redundancy for extreme deep diving operations where carrying open circuit bailout is impractical.
The COPIS Megalodon CCR was released by InnerSpace in 2006. In contrast to the fully electronic Megalodon, the COPIS is a ‘mechanical rebreather’ which works by passing a constant flow of oxygen into the breathing loop at 0.7 Lpm, which is slightly less than is needed by the diver at rest. The diver then manually adds oxygen to maintain the desired partial pressure. The valve can be used with an electronic automated oxygen injection system controller (eCCR) for a more efficient gas injection system. The combination also works as an oxygen injection “parachute” if one system fails to automatically add oxygen.
The AP Inspiration and Evolution Rebreathers.
The Dive Centre Marina Rubicon offers training on the AP Inspiration and Evolution Rebreathers right through from the introductory level 2 to Explorer Level 5 for both users and instructors. Both these units are produced by Ambient Pressure Diving (AP) which is based in Cornwall in the UK and are among the most widely used and famous Rebreathers in the world and easily recognised by their distinctive yellow housing. Ambient Pressure manufacture 95% of all their products and components in-house, which allows them to keep a strict control of the unit build quality and standards essential for the ISO 9001 manufacturing standard which applies to both units.
How do they compare?The AP Inspiration classic, first manufactured in 1997, was the world’s first production Closed Circuit Rebreather and is an excellent entry level system. The Inspiration uses Ambient Pressure’s patented Dual independent Oxygen Control System with Master and Slave Controllers and over-the-shoulder counter lungs. The unit uses two 3 litre cylinders and weighs a total of 29k ready to dive. The AP Evolution is a smaller and more compact rebreather than the Inspiration but uses many of the features developed for the inspiration. This unit weighs just 24kg ready to dive and uses two 2 litre cylinders. For more information on these units visit APdiving.com
The very first JJ-CCR Rebreather was produced in 2006. Over the years a number of improvements have been introduced into its design of the rebreather finally reaching the version now on the market. THE JJ-CCR has been described as THE 4X4 OF THE REBREATHER WORLD because It is simple, robust, adaptable and can be configured to almost any diving situation - from full on deep technical diving to lightweight recreational travel.
The JJ-CCR Rebreather is unique within the world of CCR systems. This rebreather recognises that whilst divers need a flexible, adaptable system, the base unit must be as complete as possible in terms of its features and functions. Divers do not want to buy a rebreather, spend a lot of money on it and then afterwards have to spend even more money buying additional items such as; a stand, handles, and cylinder mounting system or have to upgrade the controller for Trimix diving.
This is not the case with the JJ-CCR Rebreather! It is a fully enabled and equipped rebreather with nearly zero additional options. This is part of the K.I.S.S ethic on the JJ-CCR Rebreather, just use it and enjoy the bubble free world under water. With an industry low work of breathing measurement, long scrubber duration and accurate set point control the JJ-CCR Rebreather offers unbeatable performance.
The Sport KISS is a reliable recreational system which can take divers from the shallowest reefs to light decompression diving. Fabulous for photographers, the Sport is fun, easy to use, and takes no more time to prepare and clean than open circuit diving! The Sport KISS represents great value for money and is a good option for someone looking for an entry into recreational rebreather diving.
The Classic KISS is a reliable and adaptable rebreather designed for use in both recreational and technical diving. Deep, cave, shallow reef, photography, the Classic KISS does it all in one clean, easy to use, well priced package.