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Res Sports Med. 2007 Jul-Sep;15(3):213-23.

High altitude diving depths.

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Department of Medical Physiology, The Panum Institute, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.


In order to make any sea level dive table usable during high altitude diving, a new conversion factor is created. We introduce the standardized equivalent sea depth (SESD), which allows conversion of the actual lake diving depth (ALDD) to an equivalent sea dive depth. SESD is defined as the sea depth in meters or feet for a standardized sea dive, equivalent to a mountain lake dive at any altitude, such that [image omitted] [image omitted] [image omitted] Mountain lakes contain fresh water with a relative density that can be standardized to 1,000 kg m(-3), and sea water can likewise be standardized to a relative density of 1,033 kg m(-3), at the general gravity of 9.80665 m s(-2). The water density ratio (1,000/1,033) refers to the fresh lake water and the standardized sea water densities. Following calculation of the SESD factor, we recommend the use of our simplified diving table or any acceptable sea level dive table with two fundamental guidelines: 1. The classical decompression stages (30, 20, and 10 feet or 9, 6, and 3 m) are corrected to the altitude lake level, dividing the stage depth by the SESD factor. 2. Likewise, the lake ascent rate during diving is equal to the sea ascent rate divided by the SESD factor.

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