Safe deep diving with Trimix to explore a new world using sidemount
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Exploration Diver Level 1 Sidemount

sidemount pond diving in austria

Exploration Diver Level 1 Sidemount

Safe deep diving with trimix to explore a new world on sidemount.

The ISE Exploration Diver Level 1 course is structured to prepare divers for the rigors of exploration diving, and to familiarize them with the use of different types of breathing and decompression mixtures. The training focuses on expanding the skills learnt in the ISE Basic of Exploration, and is designed to build the necessary and essential skills required for safe and successful exploration trimix diving. This will include problem identification and resolution, and building the capacity progressively for more challenging dives.
In this course, students will be trained in: a) the use of double tanks and in the potential failure problems associated with them; b) the use of Trimix and Nitrox c) the use of Helium to minimize narcosis; and d) the applications of single decompression cylinder diving with respect to decompression procedures. The exploration diver level 1 class will focus on Nitrox and Trimix, for dives in the 50 meter depth range, and provides an excellent foundation on which divers can build their diving experience and prepare for further ISE programs.


This exploration diver level 1 class will be conducted over a duration of 5 days, and involves at least 5 dives.


  • Student to instructor ratio will not exceed 3:1 in all in-water and surface sessions.
  • Trimix 21/35 & 18/45, 50% Nitrox Deco, 2 Stage, max. depth of 60 meters.
  • Maximum training depth of 60 m, Max average depth of 48 Meters.
  • No overhead environment. (i.e caves)
  • Certification expires after 3 years. Students have to re-qualify. (An evaluation dive)

innerspace explorers logoTopics

  • Physics
  • Pressure and gas law review
  • Math relevant for planning, mixing, and using enriched air
  • Physiology
  • Hypoxia
  • Hyperoxia
  • Oxygen toxicity
  • CNS
  • Pulmonary toxicity
  • Tracking multilevel, multi-dive, and multi-day exposures
  • Inert gas narcosis
  • Inert gas absorption and elimination
  • Carbon dioxide toxicity
  • Carbon monoxide toxicity
  • Hyperthermia
  • Hypothermia
  • Decompression illness
  • Accelerated and general decompression strategies
  • Decompression practices on air, enriched air, and oxygen
  • Generic tables, computers, and custom tables
  • Introduction to normoxic and hyperoxic Trimix
  • Advantages over deep air
  • Equipment considerations (DIR emphasis)
  • Singles
  • Doubles
  • Decompression stage bottles
  • BC/harness
  • Regulators, depth gauges, pressure gauges, and hose routing
  • Manifolds
  • Surface marker buoys and spools (for deco platforms)
  • Computers and bottom timers
  • Exposure suit appropriate for the environment
  • Dive planning
  • Operational planning
  • Support
  • Teams
  • Team planning
  • Gas matching
  • Oxygen limits
  • Nitrogen limits
  • Emergency procedures
  • Omitted decompression procedures
  • Miscellaneous issues including limited deco gas, out of gas, team separation, etc.
  • Procedures
  • Bottom and deco gas
  • Normal operations
  • Procedures for failure, loss, or inadequate supply
  • Gas mixing
  • Analyzing and labeling gas supplies
  • Line following
  • Survey technics appropriate for level of diving

Drillsscooter diver in sidemount configuration

  • Reel and guideline use
  • Dive team order and protocols
  • Touch contact
  • Manifold operation and failures
  • Use of safety spools and reels
  • Basic navigation skills
  • Pre-dive drills
  • Survey and measuring techniques

Get free pre-class advice, just send me a message for details!


All students must have the following equipment for the exploration diver level 1 course. Please email the instructor should you have further enquiries.

  • Tank/s: Students are required to use two tanks. This setup msut be made for the use of two first-stages. All dives must start with a minimum of 80 cubic feet/2250 liters of gas. Divers must also have access to one deco tank/cylinder of 50% Nitrox.
  • Regulators: For double tank setup, one first stage must provide a second stage on a 2 meter hose and inflation for buoyancy compensator. The other must provide a second stage on a hose not exceeding 60 cm, attached with a shock cord on the mouth piece. It must also provide a pressure gauge on a hose not exceeding 60 cm, and inflation for dry suit. (where applicable) One first stage must provide a second stage on a 100 cm hose and also a pressure gauge.
  • Buoyancy Compensator Device: That´s not so easy… send me a message and I´ll call you back to talk about your sidemount system.
  • Lighting Systems: The primary light that should be of a canister with light cord connecting to the light head design. The battery should be inside the canister and a slot to position it on the right hip location on the waist strap. The light head should have a goodman handle with a bolt snap attached, and a loop at the bottom of the light head. The primary light should be at least a 10 watts HID or equivalent.
    At least two back-up lights that are of a twist on and off bezel design. It should be an in-line battery design that do not overdrive the bulb. There should be no on/off switch for the back-up lights. The back-up lights will have bolt snaps attached to the back of it for stowage to the system.
  • At least one depth measuring device.
  • At least one knife or line cutting device.
  • At least one low volume mask.
  • One closed style surface marker (3.3ft / 1m)
  • One closed style lift bag (80lbs / 36kg)
  • One time keeping device.
  • One pair of non split, rigid fins.
  • One underwater notepad.
  • One spool of at least 30 meters of line per diver.
  • One primary reel of at least 90 meters of line per diver.
  • One exposure suit that is appropriate for the training environment and water temperature.
  • Decompression tables.


  1. Must be at least a minimum 18 years of age.
  2. Must be ISE BoE certified or equivalent.
  3. Must have a minimum of 100 dives beyond open water certification.
  4. Must be able to perform the following
  • 400 meters swimming in less than 15 min & free dive a distance of 15 Meters.
    or alternatively
  • Snorkel 800 meters (with fins) in less than 18 min. & free dive a distance of 25 meters
    or alternatively
  • Run 1000 Meters in less than 5 min


Tuition of min 950 € per student + instructor’s travel and diving expenses. (to be shared equally among all students).

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