Home Diver Training Agency News ANDI Tec & Dive Week

ANDI Tec & Dive Week

ANDI (American Nitrox Divers International) Europe organizes an annual so-called Tec & Dive week at different venues around the world. In 2009 this took place from 4 - 11 June at the Orca Dive Center in Safaga. The aim of theseTec & Dive weeks is to provide training in technical diving, mainly in the field of closed-circuit rebreather, on different levels, both for users and instructors. Those divers who have already completed ANDI technical diver training are offered the opportunity to dive at their level with like-minded buddies conducting beautiful dives in different environments and learning from each other – another form of continuing education. These training weeks include daily diving and in the evenings seminars are offered on various topics such as rebreathers, advanced decompression theory, gas filling and blending systems, etc.

ANDI Europe is one of many Regional Headquarters (RHQ) throughout the world. It is part of ANDI and presides over 20 European countries. The Europe RHQ is located in Ede in the Netherlands (www.andi-europe.eu).
ANDI  was founded 20 years ago by Ed Betts in the United States – initially the objective was to bring divers and Nitrox, with all its advantages, together to make diving safer. It was not very long before divers were using not only air, the basic misture, but also a so-called bottom mix and a deco mix for accelerated and more efficient decompression.

 
This level was called by ANDI Technical SafeAir Diver (TSD). ANDI uses SafeAir to refer to Nitrox that meets very high purity standards and
is used to make diving generally safer. TSD training is at Level 3. All Level 3 courses (OC, SCR, CCR) are designed as an introduction to decompression - with a maximum depth of 50m and a maximum decompression time of 30 minutes or 45 minutes when using Normoxic Trimix. Furthermore, the correct use of the reel and SMB (Surface Marker Buoy) is practiced. At this level only one decompression gas is used. Level 4 is where the exploration dives are undertaken, ie mission-oriented diving at a high diver level with longer, unlimted decompression times, and use of several decogases.

The equipment configuration is different to that at level 3 but not that for level 5, full Trimix with unlimited depth. The fact that the transition from Level 4 to Level 5 in training no longer requires changing equipment, but only a slightly greater depth is identified, increases safety considerably. There is no additional task load, because the diver has already been made familiar with his equipment on many dives. The Level 4 training includes a lot of "advanced skills" and is intended to increase diving skills significantly.


The same levels are found in training in the use of semi-closed circuit rebreathers (SCR) and closed circuit rebreathers (CCR). Basically ANDI aims to carry out training in the field of Technical Diving at high levels with the highest quality. Safety is paramount here.

The intensive training is reflected in the many compulsory dives required by the General Standards of ANDI for each stage, as well as the extensive theory lessons. In addition to this program, ANDI provides training to become an ANDI Technical Wreck Diver, a very extensive training in wreck penetration. In addition, a solo diver training was developed. Other training courses are: Gas Blender, Service Technician, Oxygen Administator, Diver Propulsion Vehicle use, Cave Diving, Chamber Operation, etc.

ANDI incidentally also has a very special sport diver program, which integrates elements of technical diving from the outset. Figure 1 shows how all the stages and types of training are linked. At every stage, you have the appropriate divemaster and instructor training. If you want to be an ANDI Instructor at a certain level, it is a requirement to have completed a specific number of courses at a lower lever to qualify for an upgrade.

During Tec & Dive Week in June this year in Egypt several instructors offered training at different levels on a range of rebreathers. ANDI currently has training programs for the following CCR's: Inspiration, Evolution, Voyager, Megalodon, COPIS, Pathfinder, rEvo, Hammerhead CCR, KISS, Ouroborous, Sentinel and Nautilus. Other rebreathers will soon be incorporated into the training program. The Tec & Dive week at Orca was significantly supported by them. A  private boat was made available, along with a training room for the presentations, a separate storage area for the technical equipment, staff to produce the gas mixes and aeas for cleaning, drying and storing the expensive rebreathers.

Accommodation and meals were also available nearby at the bungalow belonging to the Dive Center and in the restaurant. In this way evereything was close together and valuable time was not lost leaving more time available for the main task.


In 2010, the ANDI Europe Tec & Dive week will be held in Malta. It will seek to explore several deep wrecks, especially one in 120m depth, the identity of which is not yet clear.

 

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