Diving with NITROX

Gas mixtures with enriched oxygen content are called EAN (Enriched air nitrox) or NITROX with a figure denoting the percentage of oxygen in the mixture. Mixtures vary from NITROX 22 to NITROX 99. Diving with various NITROX mixtures is linked to underwater work at small depths and technical diving at deeper depths where it is used for decompression purposes.

Standard mixtures used for recreational diving are NITROX 32 and NITROX 36, which have become more popular in recent years due to a variety of advantages.

Some of the advantages of NITROX mixtures are as follows: extended dives without decompression based on NITROX tables and evaluations greater safety in view of decompression sickness if tables are adhered to shorter decompression time in contrast to diving with oxygen.

Despite numerous advantages, the dangers of using NITROX mixtures are: each dive requires a meticulous analysis of the mixture to be used during diving ( mistakes are occasionally made in mixture ratio) greater risk of oxygen toxicity due to partial pressure at smaller depths (34 m in the case of a NITROX 36 mixture the identical partial pressure with oxygen is reached at 66 m).

In spite of disadvantages, recreational diving with NITROX mixtures is becoming more and more popular; however, divers should adhere to rules and regulations and plan their dives carefully.

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