A next-generation exosuit now on display at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, is designed to allow a diver to safely reach depths of 1,000 feet, where pressure is 30 times greater than at the surface.
This is diver Michael Lombardi testing the suit, which will be on display in the museum's Paul Milstein Family Hall of Ocean Life through March 5.
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Made from hard metal, the exosuit weighs 530 pounds and was designed to allow divers to do many types of difficult and delicate tasks.
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Back of suit
The back side of the exosuit features a life support system, which is meant to let a diver remain far below the surface for hours. The suit has 1.6-horsepower foot-controlled thrusters and 18 rotary joints in the arms and legs, allowing the diver to move and to control special accessories.
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30 times the pressure
The water pressure at a depth of 1,000 feet is 30 times that of the surface. Most recreational divers can safely reach depths of only 100 feet.
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Another view of Lombardi testing the one-of-a-kind suit.
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Training with the suit
In order to test the exosuit, it was lifted and deployed into a test tank at Nuytco Research in North Vancouver, Canada.
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The exosuit does not work on its own. Instead, it's used in conjunction with this remotely operated vehicle, called the DeepReef-ROV. It was designed to study bioluminescence and biofluorescence by taking high-resolution photographs of marine life.
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The exosuit is test-fitted by Jim Clark from the J.F. White Contracting Company, which owns the suit.
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Another look at the exosuit, which will be used as part of the Stephen J. Barlow Bluewater Expedition, during which scientists will study New England's mesopelagic, or midwater, habitat.