Tags: united states navy | massachusetts institute of technology | wetsuits | divers

US Navy Developing Wetsuits for Arctic Warfare

US Navy Developing Wetsuits for Arctic Warfare
(Dreamstime)

By    |   Friday, 07 September 2018 01:50 PM

The United States Navy along with researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have invented a new way of treating wetsuits to dramatically increase how long divers can stay in freezing waters, Defense One reports.

MIT chemical engineering researchers Jacopo Buongiorno and Michael Strano found that when the air pockets in neoprene are filled with "heavy, inert gases like argon or xenon," the suit remains insulated far longer in frigid waters, which could allow divers to remain in waters measured at 48 degrees Fahrenheit for hours rather than minutes.

"Our process is unique in that it modifies an existing wetsuit, making it demonstrably more insulating. So far, there are no tradeoffs with respect to comfort, flexibility, dexterity, etc. So the technology appears promising," Strano said in an email to Defense One.

"The next phase of our research will examine the human factor for this technology," he added. "We’ve demonstrated a record low in thermal conductivity for neoprene, an important advance for sure. But the next step is to conduct field trials," to see how humans fair in the suit.

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The United States Navy along with researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have invented a new way of treating wetsuits to dramatically increase how long divers can stay in freezing waters, Defense One reports.
united states navy, massachusetts institute of technology, wetsuits, divers
179
2018-50-07
Friday, 07 September 2018 01:50 PM
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