Enriched Air, sometimes called Nitrox, is air that has been enriched with oxygen so that it has more than 21% oxygen. For the purpose of enriched air no decompression diving, you will learn to use enriched air with 22% to 40% oxygen.
Although enriched air is relatively new to recreational diving, military and commercial divers have been using it to extend their bottom times for nearly 60 years. The United States Navy and British Navy have used enriched air since the 1940's. The United States Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has more than 25 years experience with enriched air. Recreational Divers have made thousands of enriched air dives successfully. Through these data and this field experience, the no decompression limits for enriched air are considered as reliable as those used for "normal" air.
Through reduction of the nitrogen in the breathing mixture you will be able to substantially increase your bottom times. A dive made to 50 feet on air, has a no decompression limit of 80 minutes, according to the PADI Recreational AIR Dive Planner. The same dive made on 36% Oxygen Enriched Air would give you a bottom time of 220 minutes. The trade off is that as you increase the oxygen exposure, you also increase the hazardous of oxygen toxicity. Much of what you will learn in the Nitrox program deals with keeping your oxygen exposure within safe limits.
Through proper use of Nitrox we are one step closer to that holy grail of divers, "unlimited bottom time".
The knowledge development portion of the Nitrox Course will be completed through our Home Study Program. You will begin by watching the video, which emphasizes the basic procedures and concepts for enriched air diving. Along with the video you will read through the manual which will guide you in using the enriched air tables to plan dives, determine no decompression dive limits and monitor oxygen exposure.
Upon completion of your home studies you will meet with a professional PADI Nitrox Instructor who will review the material with you to assure your learning.
No dives required.