February 2008

Defender of the Deep
Stan Waterman isn't the only celebrated legendary underwater photographer. In an article at Canadian theglobeandmail.com, Patrick White presents an encounter with Bernard Hanby, now 74 years old, who together with biologist Andy Lamb co-authored Marine Life of the Pacific Northwest -- A Photographic Encyclopedia of Invertebrates, Seaweeds and Selected Fishes. It took Hanby 25 years, 4,000 dives and tens of thousands of pictures to complete the 400-page book. Mr. Hanby is concerned about the ecologic decline of the waters off British Columbia, enough to have co-founded the Marine Life Sanctuary Society in 1989, but with little impact. "We really need a beneficent dictator here," Mr. Hanby said, "we got nowhere with the government." These days, Mr. Hanby considers switching to digital so he won't have to shlep so many cameras around. -- Posted Friday, February 22, 2008 by chb

The submersible Rinspeed sQuba car
30 years ago James Bond had a car that could dive in the movie "The Spy Who Loved Me," but it was little more than a prop. Now Swiss tuner and visionary Frank Rinderknecht built a Lotus that can really dive. The Rinspeed sQuba is based on a Lotus Elise, is electrically powered and can be used as a car, a boat and a submarine. It's an open vehicle, so the driver and passenger use onboard Scubapro scuba gear when underwater. [Go to a description and pictures of the Rinspeed sQuba submersible sports car] -- Posted Thursday, February 14, 2008 by chb

Bonaire designated as the most pristine Caribbean coral reef by NOAA
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has designated Bonaire as having “arguably the most pristine coral reef environment in the Caribbean.” Bonaire’s reef may well become the benchmark for which all other coral reefs will be compared, given that research has shown Bonaire as having the highest percentage of coral cover and the lowest percentage of algal cover compared to other Caribbean reefs. [Read more about the NOAA Ocean Explorer Bonaire expedition.] -- Posted Thursday, February 7, 2008 by chb

iPhone Nitrox Blending Calculator
An increasing number of free web-based applications are available for Apple's sleek and sexy iPhone. Now there is a convenient Enriched Air Nitrox blending calculator that can be used at your air station to provide the information you need to fill a Nitrox tank from any existing mix (or empty). The application also provides a “bleed down” calculator to easily change an existing mix with minimum waste oxygen. Calculations are also available for Equivalent Air Depth, Maximum Operating Depth at various oxygen partial pressures and to figure out the best mix for a planned depth and oxygen partial pressure. [Check the iPhone Nitrox Blending Calculator] -- Posted Tuesday, February 5, 2008 by chb