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The Boys in the Underwater Bubble
The Boys in the Underwater Bubble

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AIR DATE: September 8, 2010

How would you like to take a trip to an underwater fortress? Reno brothers, Logan and Jordan Needham can make that happen. They've invented the Bubble Room, an underwater steel and vinyl room pumped full of air that lets divers hang out as much as twenty feet under water. So how did they build it? And what is meant for? We talk with Logan and Jordan Needham about their invention.

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Jordan Needham
Logan Needham

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COMMENTS:
This looks completely and utterly amazing! I want one!! I swear if I ever put in a pool (been considering it btw) I will contact you crazy cats!! "Aunty Palin" needs to relax a little, good response by the way Jordan. I like that you guys are smart and humble and don't get offended by boobs spouting negativity. Keep it up! I want to see the next invention from y'all! -David
Dave S.Apr 4, 2011 10:50:57 AM
Oh Lordy this contraption is a death trap/lawsuit just waiting to pop.

1. What if just one square of the plastic sheet bubble pops, and the air rushes out? People inside the bubble may not have the presence of mind to escape and even if they did, they might get tangled in the now exposed netting.

2. Is there an automatic system to add air to the bubble or are the occupants supposed to manually open a valve when it "feels" like air needs to be added. What if someone falls asleep in the bubble?

3. At least they addressed the air embolism danger on the radio program. Even if it is a formally run facility, there's going to be a novice or bozo who will hold their breath while ascending.

I can see how a family of divers can use the bubble room safely but if this is sold as a product, the liability is literally and figuratively going to be a killer given the lawsuit crazed climate in the US.

Aunty PalinSep 17, 2010 21:55:42 PM
To answer a few of your concerns; 1. We have experimented with different thicknesses of vinyl and what would happen if a hole was poked in one of the "squares" the vinyl is super tough stuff and does not "rip" easily at all. in addition the actual force on each square is more negligible than one would assume just by looking at it. On one of the earlier versions with considerably thinner vinyl I was barely able to push my finger through the vinyl the hole I made with my finger did not get any bigger than I originally made it and it simply slowly bubbled air out it took about ten minutes to fully empty, no danger there. In addition there is a buddy system in place and we all carry dive knives and always have a spare tank with two regulators on it down on the sand under the room at all times. 2. The version you see in the video is one of the very first prototypes, the patented consumer version is fed by a fresh air bubbler providing 2x as much CFM as the occupants would need based on the Miners safety association CFM per person requirements. I have passed out from co2 build up personally myself, not in the bubble room, but in a crawlspace while Co2 Ice blasting and, to be cont:
Jordan Needham (co-Inventor)Apr 4, 2011 08:42:09 AM
it's not like you feel completely normal then just "fall asleep" there is about 10 to 15 minutes where you can very definitely tell that the air feels thin and it is more difficult to catch your breath, very similar feeling to aerobic exercise at elevations higher than what your used to. To a person with a shred of common sense there is more than enough warning and we empty most of the bubble and fill it back up with fresh air there is also a vent on the patented version that keeps someone from turning off the bubbler and letting the air get thin if the fresh air gets turned off it auto empties its self. Also there is no net at all on the private version to "get tangled in" which hasn't happened on the lake version either. As for the average bozo safety factor. Yes that is a major concern the patented versions in swimming pools are considerably shallower lowering the ratio of expansion and in turn the embolism danger. Just because something has a level of danger when it is not used correctly does not make it unmarketable due to safety reasons, Sky diving, Scuba Diving, Bungee jumping, Hang gliding, Driving a car,
Jordan NeedhamApr 4, 2011 09:00:36 AM
These are just a few things with the potential for death right around the corner if the operator does not follow a few set safety guidelines, that's what liability waivers, warning labels and safety training courses are for. Just because something has the potential for danger doesn't mean we should take it off the table of possible human achievement. Can you imagine what life would be like if every time there was the possibility of danger we just went back into our caves? We would probably still be living in them. Hope this answers a few of your cancers thanks for listing, and reading!
Jordan NeedhamApr 4, 2011 09:08:49 AM
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