Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Early embolism prevention system for divers

Ensuring the safety and well-being of all those undertaking space travel and also deep sea exploration forms part of the scientific demands placed on the technologies supporting these endeavours.
Early embolism prevention system for divers
A new invention, developed by an Israeli researcher, could mark a turning point in the way divers (and potentially astronauts) are forewarned and protected from the occurrence of gas embolisms. Embolisms are caused by the presence of gas bubbles in the blood stream that can be fatal depending on the blockage they cause. They are affected by the changing of the pressure in the environment (deep sea and space) and in some cases such changes can prove catastrophic for divers and astronauts.

This innovative device, termed the Gas Bubble Indicator (GBI), can be described as a new bio-physiological optical non-invasive sensor. It can effectively monitor the existence and accumulation of gas bubbles in the blood stream in real time thus providing a reliable picture of the individual's physiological status and preventing any damage from occurring.

The GBI can be a standalone device or form part of an expanded dive computer thus allowing faster comparisons with existing decompression tables. The final analysis will provide a complete picture of the status of gas bubbles in the bloodstream and how they will effect the time required for decompression.

The technology behind GBI is essentially a light beam that scans blood vessels and monitors the presence and size of gas bubbles as well as their rate of accumulation. At the same time, the device also monitors the diver's vital signs and provides feedback back to the diver in real time.

The developers are now seeking to further explore the potential of this technology and are inviting industrial players active in the field of activity for further support.
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