Sunday, 30 June 2013

Poseidon Rebreather Trial


Poseidon claims that the MKVI provides the first true technological breakthrough for rebreathers in decades and is an absolute game changer. I was keen to find out why and so I attended a product trial day in Brisbane, Australia. Before having the opportunity to test the equipment we received a basic overview of rebreathers and how they work and so before reading our review, below is a brief summary of what a rebreather is.

What is a Re-breather:

Air comprises of approximately 20% oxygen. Once inhaled and exhaled the same air contains about 15% oxygen. About 5% of the volume of air inhaled and exhaled is converted from oxygen to carbon dioxide. With this in mind a rebreather, in scuba diving terms, is a breathing apparatus that recycles the unused oxygen content (remaining 15%) of each breath. It does this by adding oxygen only as required to replenish the amount metabolised by the diver. This differs from regular open-circuit breathing apparatus, where the exhaled gas is discharged directly into the environment. This can triple your dive time. There are a number of other benefits to making use of rebreather equipment, some of which are discussed below.

The Poseidon MKVI Re-breather:

The Poseidon MKVI is the world’s first rebreather for recreational divers. It’s a fully closed, fully automated unit that will make you see diving in a different light. Poseidon’s MKVI has 5 big advantages over traditional open circuit equipment:

  • 3 hours typical dive time
  • Safer and easier to use
  • No decompression stops
  • Warm breathing gas
  • Silent operation 

Advantages of Poseidon MKVI over traditional rebreathers:

  • The process of upgrading between the first two models is cheaper and easier. This simply requires that you upgrade your 'battery pack' which includes the chip. 
  • Lighter and smaller.
  • Safer and easier (completely automated).
  • Simple toggle switch between open and closed circuit if required.

Our experience:

The product trial period began with a brief introduction to rebreathers and how they operate. During the introduction we were informed about the differing sensations one feels, between open and closed circuit systems. If you are a diver you would know that a strange sensation or abnormal feeling can quite often lead to increased anxiety levels. These were three very important tips that ensured we remained relaxed and having fun.

  • Your breathing will not influence your buoyancy.
  • You hear sounds you usually would not, as rebreathers are silent.
  • Occasionally we will hear oxygen being pumped into the system and this may affect your buoyancy. You can compensate for this by exhaling through your nose or using your dumping valve.

The equipment was set up and ready to go before our arrival. These rebreathers take approximately 15 minutes to set up – which is not a lot of time, considering an open circuit system takes 5-6 minutes. Despite the equipment being completely self-checking we were shown how to test the equipment and instructed how to interpret the dive computer. The product trial took place in a heated pool for 50 minutes.

Advantages to making use of a rebreather:

  • Silent and with little to no bubbles (especially good for getting close to marine life).
  • Longer dive times
  • Less to no chance of decompression illness
  • The gas is not dry keeping you warmer in winter
  • The gas is moist, so less dehydration

Disadvantages to making use of rebreathers:
  • Sometimes expensive to buy 
  • High degree of maintenance/preparation & cleaning work
  • Slightly more in-water drag
  • Most dive boats/facilities are not geared up for rebreathers
  • As they are not common place, servicing can be difficult

Dive Flag App's Over Review:

When trailing equipment pertinent to your safety, it is important to do so in a pool or in a very controlled environment. This is to ensure you are comfortable and not putting yourself at risk. We recommend that you  attend this sort of trial day, because they are interactive, informative and keep you up to date with product developments. As a diver you will have more of an idea about what you want in your equipment and your dive experience. Furthermore, having a knowledge about how other types of systems work will put you in a better position to help those, making use of these systems, in distress.

The Poseidon MKVI is more expensive than an open circuit system. Although the price may appear to be high, the advantages to making use of this type of system help to justify it. Not having to worry about decompression times, gas levels or dive times is a luxury many wish they had. Furthermore, if you are an aspiring underwater photographer like myself it is often necessary to get close to marine life. Trial and error shows that marine life do not respond well to bubbles or noise and so making use of a rebreather will give you an added advantage. 

Overall, rebreathers are exciting and provide for an improved diving experience. The Poseidon MKVI was simple to understand, easy-to-use and comfortable. I highly recommend the Poseidon MKVI. SSI have provided for complete diver training from OW to Instructor making use of rebreathers. I believe this is a fantastic advancement in the industry and I am excited to see where this is headed. Huge thanks to Brisbane Snorkel Safari and Poseidon. 

Over score: 10/10

If you would like more information regarding this experience or the product, please feel free to contact myself or Brisbane Snorkel Safari. We would be more than willing to answer your questions. Furthermore, you may wish to book in for a trial and see just how fantastic rebreathers can be. 

Best regards,

Frank Vorster
Dive Flag App
+61 420 222 139


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  2. I was keen to find out why and so I attended a product trial day in Brisbane, Australia. Consumerism Inc.