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Equipment & Systems

Spargers | Air safety systems for competitive diving and training

Air Cushion Safety Systems for Diving

Instant air cushion sparger systems are an essential feature for any facility with a diving training program. Natare sparger systems (bubblers) utilize special stainless steel and PVC sparger nozzles (diffusers) installed in the pool floor directly under the diving boards or platforms. The system provides a mound of bubbles to cushion the diver’s impact into the water and gives the diver a clear visual reference for the water surface.

Natare air safety cushion sparger systems provide cushioning and visual reference for divers in training.

Natare sparger system provides a mound of highly aerated water to cushion the diver’s impact while offering a clear visual reference on the water’s surface.

Bubbles are activated on demand by the coach or trainer using a hand held remote control that starts and stops the release of air. The bubbling action normally lasts for between five to seven seconds, providing adequate time to coordinate the air release with the diver’s entry into the water.

The sparger nozzles are supplied by a high capacity compressor and storage tank, which are located in a remote mechanical room or service area.

Air safety cushion systems can be installed for permanent or temporary use, either during new construction or for existing pools.

Air cushion systems are regularly installed throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. The first installations were in Olympic caliber facilities such as the Indiana University Natatorium in Indianapolis and the King County Aquatic Center in Seattle, Washington. Since the initial introduction in 1971, air cushion safety systems have become a requirement for any facility with a top quality diving training program.

How It Works

An air safety cushion sparger system is a combination of air compressor, sparger diffuser nozzles, control valves, filters and controls individually selected to provide the correct quantity and quality of air to the bottom of the diving pool. A uniform mixture of air and water in the diver’s entry area lessens the fear of injury during training. The highly aerated foam cushion helps the diver to concentrate on the mechanics of learning new dives, particularly dives with a higher degree of difficulty. The froth of water also helps the diver to judge the water surface accurately.

The coach or trainer communicates with the diver to coordinate the initiation of the bubbling action as the diver leaves the tower or platform, then stops the air flow after the diver enters the water. Operation is simple and easy, and both coach and diver soon learn to maximize the beneficial effects of the system.

Air cushion sparger systems are designed and manufactured specifically for each application. The number, size and location of the aerating sparger diffuser nozzles are custom designed for diving pool depths, board heights and locations. Compressor, air storage and compressed air needs are based upon diffuser nozzle requirements and required cycle times.

Typical systems consist of a base mounted compressor with one or more air receivers (air storage units). Depending upon compressor size and storage capacity, dives can be completed as often as every two to four minutes. In addition to the air compressor and storage units, a complete air quality and control system is provided. The systems include pressure reducing valves, filters, air regulation valves, electric solenoid control valves and control panel. Remote handheld push button control pendants can be radio controlled or cable connected to the control panel.

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