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White-water Air Supply

For sports with lots of white-water action/danger.
  [vote for,

I'm sure there's others, but the two sports that I can think of that deal with a lot of whitewater are rafting and surfing. I've surfed for years and have had many experiences where I didn't know where up was becuase I was floating or sinking in a soup of bubbles.

Keeping a SCUBA gear would be wieldy and take the experience out of anything. My idea is for a wearable suit that can store only a couple breathfuls of air. Inflatable bladders would be sewn into a wetsuit evenly around the upper body area. It would also serve as a flotation device. For rafting though, it would be primarily a flotation device, from which you can attach hoses to and breath in and out of. It is important to breath from and also, if you have strength, breath into the flotation device, or you might breathe away all your bouyancy!

For surfing, where you normally submurge yourself to go underneath waves, a less bouyant version is needed. Maybe 3 breaths, and then that's it. It should be more than enough.

The breathing tube would be fitted with a one way valve, so you're not drinking a little bit of water, or sea water before you take a breath. You can then have the option of breathing out into an external bag, saving that air for bouyant purposes, or rebreathing if needed.

twitch, Jun 05 2007

Whitewater http://en.wikipedia...tewater_controversy
[normzone, Mar 30 2010]

Air Supply http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_Supply
[normzone, Mar 30 2010]


       [twitch], when I read your title, I immediately thought of a device that could separate the water from the air (//floating or sinking in a soup of bubbles//), and then allow you to breath the air part.
Ling, Jun 05 2007

       You've not mentioned one important fact about white water: with all that entrained air, it's less dense than clear water, so you need a lot of extra buoyancy to float in it.   

       Another thing: rebreathing exhaled air (as in your final sentence) is a pretty desperate measure. There's still plenty of oxygen in it, but the carbon dioxide level is so high that your haemoglobin can't exchange its CO2 for oxygen. You also feel as though you're choking because your breathing reflex is controlled by the CO2 concentration in your lungs. You are actually suffocating, of course. Now if you can remove the CO2 somehow, you can rebreath the same air several times usefully. Some calcium hydroxide in the bag, perhaps?
Cosh i Pi, Jun 05 2007

       My original idea for this was for an apparatus that could separate air from water within white water, but upon further contemplation, I got frustrated. So this is My version 1 of sorts.
twitch, Jun 05 2007

       I'm sure that ought to be possible - and very useful if so.
Cosh i Pi, Jun 05 2007

       I thought this was an idea for a waterproof mp3 player that plays only soft rock bands.
Adze, Jun 05 2007

       My first thoughts on an air/water separator:
Needs a drop out chamber.
Water at bottom of drop out chamber is blown out when breathing out.
Some kind of interface to keep water and air apart.
Rotating gymbal gadget to keep air offtake at the top.
Air balancer to make sure there is at least one lungful of air in the system, in case the white water doesn't contain enough air.

       That's a complicated system, but maybe do-able.
Ling, Jun 05 2007

       //Keeping a SCUBA gear would be wieldy // Most SCUBA gear I know of is anything but wieldy. Did you mean "unwieldy"?
coprocephalous, Jun 05 2007

       I had trouble thinking about keeping things upright, but with your gymbal [ling], it is possible. I was thinking about it being in a helmet and vest together, using the helmet to separate air and water, and using the vest to store air. I think about it, it might be backwards. If you want the air to travel up, it would be best to collect the air at the bottom of the vest, but then is there enough white-water? many things to think about.
twitch, Jun 05 2007

       An easy way to try this out would be to connect a snorkle mouthpiece via a flexhose to a floatation bag in a kayak. Being able to take a couple of breaths while upside down would make a big difference when learning to roll.   

       BTY, the breathing reflex triggered by CO2 is largely suppressed with enough adrenaline -- a condition easy to achieve when underwater in a rapid!
Optiker, Jun 05 2007

       I've read of kayak skirts fitted with tubes and snorkel mouthpieces. You're breathing air you've been sitting in, but it's better than nothing.   

       I'd get a 2-liter soda-pop bottle and pressurize it with a bike pump, then graft that into a Camelbak water carrier.
baconbrain, Jun 05 2007

       [baconbrain] "You're breating air you've been sitting in, but it's better than nothing." Indeed it is. It's better than air you've already breathed, too - even if you've been farting.
Cosh i Pi, Jun 06 2007

       [baconbrain], if you're going to pressurize something that comes from home, get something that's meant to be pressurized, like a pump-poison-sprayer, before any poison goes into it of course.   

       I like somebodies snorkel idea. I think i'm going to put that into another idea somewhere.... hmm. but what?
twitch, Jun 06 2007

       Can you reverse a stillsuit to produce air instead of water? Just to keep the spice flowing, of course.
Noexit, Jun 08 2007

       Oh. And I was so curious as to how a political scandal and a soft rock band could fit together (links).   

       I carry small SCUBA devices with me when I freedive, some are marketed under the trade name Spare Air.   

       I have a military surplus unit that's about the size of a beer bottle, and it contains about 6 - 8 good breaths at approximately 65 feet underwater - it would give you more at a shallower depth.   

       Built into a suit would be sweet. But if you get any kind of depth at all, you're going to need pressurized air or you won't be able to expand your lungs.
normzone, Mar 30 2010

       It wouldn't be hard to build it with a check valve such that you breath in from one partition, and out into another. Locate them in a single chamber so the inflated volume stays roughly constant.   

       The real problem would be that you're either doing the entire rapids in a breath mask, or you're never going to get this in as you're to busy trying not to hit rocks even if you're operating above an instinctual level at all.
MechE, Mar 31 2010

       I'm lying alone with my head in the foam
Trying to breathe til it hurts
I know you hurt too but what else can we do
When our raft has been dashed apart
I wish I could carry some oxygen tanks
For times when my life feels so low
It would make me believe, in the waves I could breathe
When we're pulled way down below, way down below...

       I 'm all out of air, I'm dizzy without it
I know you were quite not breathing for so long
I 'm all out of air, I need some more O2
I can't be too late to finish this silly song...
RayfordSteele, Apr 01 2010

       If you only want a couple of breaths, you could use a tiny air canister, like the CO2 cartridges you get for paintball and airsoft pistols. Actually, there's nothing sci-fi about the ones they used in Star Wars (ok maybe they lasted too long).
marklar, Apr 01 2010


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