SCUBA Project

By Rachel Braun

Gas Laws

Boyle's Law: States that the volume of a sample of gas changes inversely with the pressure of the gas as long as there is no change in temperature or amount of gas.

Charles's Law: States that the volume of a gas is directly related to the temperature when there is no change in the pressure or amount of gas.

Dalton's Law: States that the total pressure exerted by a homogeneous mixture of gases is equal to the sum of the partial pressures of the individual gases.

Gay-Lussac's Law: States that at constant volume, the pressure of an ideal gas gas is directly proportional to its absolute temperature.

Henry's Law: States that at constant temperature, the amount of a given gas that dissolves in a given type and volume of liquid is directly proportional to the partial pressure of that gas in equilibrium with that liquid.

The Bends (Decompression Syndrome)

Causes: the formation of bubbles of gas that occur with changes in pressure during scuba diving

Dangers: blocking blood flow and disrupting blood vessels and nerves by stretching and tearing them.

Side Effects: Pain in and around joints, fatigue, rashes, itching, burning pain in chest, cough, difficulty breathing, low back pain, dizziness

Treatment: hyperbaric chambers, high-flow oxygen and IV fluids

Gas Laws: Henry's law (as pressure increases, solubility of gases in liquids increases) is applied because when a diver descends, the nitrogen inhaled has no place to escape and when under pressure gets soluble in the bloodstream, muscles, and tissues. The problem comes when the diver ascends and the pressure is released. The nitrogen tries to escape and can form bubbles causing the bends.

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Air Embolisms

Causes: when your veins or arteries are exposed and pressure allows air to travel into them

Dangers: respiratory failure, heart failure

Symptoms: difficulty breathing, chest pain, muscle or joint pain, stroke, confusion, loss of consciousness, low-blood pressure, blue skin hue

Treatment: surgery, hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Gas Laws: Boyle's law applies because it states that a gas will expand during the lungs as the pressure decreases when a diver returns to the surface. If a diver doesn't expel airs from his lungs while ascending the volume of the lungs can expand twice their size and ultimately explode.

Oxygen Toxicity

Causes: when mechanical ventilation uses pure oxygen, exposure to toxins, poisons, environmental or other substances

Dangers: drowning, death, lung damage

Symptoms: seizure, facial twitch, tunnel vision, ringing in ears, nausea, irritability, dizziness, vertigo, difficulty breathing

Treatment: ascend to shallower depths and seek medical assistance based on symptoms present

Gas Laws: Dalton's law applies here. If you have a mixture of nitrogen and oxygen and you add pressure, both the nitrogen and oxygen will compress equally. As a diver descends they breathe increasingly more dense air. Dalton's law dictates that the diver is breathing more nitrogen and oxygen molecules per breathe the deeper they go. Increased partial pressures of oxygen can cause toxicity.

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Scuba Diving with Gas Laws

Works Cited

"The Chemistry of Scuba Diving." The Chemistry of Scuba Diving. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

"Dalton's Law - Physics of Diving." Dalton's Law - Physics of Diving. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

Davis, Andy. "The Physics of Diving - Scuba Gas Laws." Scuba Tech Philippines Blog RSS. Scuba Tech Philippines, n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

"An Introduction to Scuba Gas Laws - Part 3: Henry's Law." Aquaviews SCUBA Blog. N.p., 26 Sept. 2009. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

Kivi, Rose. "Air Embolism." Healthline. N.p., 25 Sept. 2015. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

"Oxygen Toxicity and Scuba Diving." Sports. Zergnet, n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

Sawatzky, David. "Oxygen Toxicity - Signs and Symptoms | Dive Rite." Dive Rite. N.p., 11 Jan. 2016. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.