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— Outdoors

Easybreath snorkel mask promises more land-like breathing underwater

For those people unprepared to learn to scuba dive, snorkeling is a great way to explore the water while remaining close to the surface. The main problem with it is that it forces the swimmer to breathe through only their mouth, which can feel unnatural. Tribord's new Easybreath mask aims to solve that problem, by allowing natural breathing through the nose or mouth. Read More
— Architecture

Studio Octopi proposes River Thames swimming pools

London architecture firm Studio Octopi has designed concepts for the creation of natural swimming pools in the River Thames. The designs were a response to "London As It Could Be Now," an open call ideas project developed by The Architecture Foundation with Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners and the Royal Academy of Arts. Participants were asked explore ideas that raised awareness of the Thames and increased people’s interaction with it. Read More

Where's your jetpack? It's underwater

Who wouldn't like to fly around underwater? You can already sort of do so using devices such as the SeaBob, although you're still basically just "along for the ride." If SCP Marine Innovations' Underwater Jet Pack reaches production, however, it looks like it should provide an experience much closer to that of being Aquaman. Read More
— Marine

SAMS wetsuits make surfers look less tasty

Worldwide, around 100 people are attacked by sharks each year. The anxiety this produces isn't helped by the fact that traditional black wetsuits make divers and surfers look like seals, and it’s not a good idea to dress up as a shark’s favorite snack before going into the water. Australian company Shark Attack Mitigation Systems (SAMS) is developing wetsuits designed to deter shark attacks rather than ring the dinner gong by using disruptive patterns that sharks have trouble seeing, or that make them think twice about attacking. Read More

Portable device detects toxic blue-green algae in water

Cyanobacteria, more commonly known as blue-green algae, can potentially be quite nasty. Some types of the bacteria produce toxins, which can poison humans or other animals that ingest water in which they’re present. Now, however, scientists are developing a portable sensor that will instantly alert users to the presence of the microbes in water samples. Read More
— Robotics

Unleash the Kraken! Robot octopus learning to swim

The octopus is a natural escape artist. It can squeeze its soft body into impossibly tight spaces and often baffles aquarium workers with its ability to break out of tanks. These abilities could be very useful in an underwater robot, which is why the OCTOPUS Project, a consortium of European robotics labs, is attempting to reverse engineer it in all its tentacled glory. Now researchers from the Foundation for Research and Technology (FORTH), in Hellas, Greece are learning how the robot might use its tentacles to swim. Read More
— Children

Seal system aims to keep kids from drowning

It can’t be easy, being a lifeguard at a pool full of children. The kids that catch your attention are going to be the ones who are splashing and yelling, whereas the ones that you really need to look for could be silently slipping below the surface, where they won’t be seen or heard. North Carolina-based emergency physician Graham Snyder decided that those potential drowning victims needed more attention drawn to their predicament, so he created the Seal system. Read More