KUR In The News

Karst Underwater Research (KUR) exploration divers Bob Beckner, and KUR executive director Matt Vinzant discuss their journey and experience with bailout rebreathers including a discussion of various units, lessons learned, specifics on gas planning and added complexities, and how bailout breathers factor in KUR’s team diving operations. Is there a bailout rebreather in your future?

Published on January 31, 2024 By InDEPTH

Armed with reliable rebreathers, expedition-grade scooters, electric heating, helium mixes, high-powered dive computers, and those all-important P-valves, today’s cave explorers are giving our collective underwater envelope a hard shove (deeper and longer), all the while enduring increasing hours of long, cold, boring decompression. That’s the reason…

Published on October 27, 2022 By InDEPTH

Forget rebreathers. With the pandemic still spreading, ventilators have arguably become one of the most essential pieces of life-support kit on the planet. We asked anesthesiologist and director of Karst Underwater Research (KUR) Andy Pitkin to brief us on these life-saving devices. Take a deep breath.

Published on May 2, 2020 By InDEPTH

Forget those ‘leaky valves!’ The mechanical FATHOM CCR’s secret sauce is a specially-designed needle valve that enables divers to dial in their oxygen flow rate underwater eliminating the need for pesky electronic controllers and solenoids—or so proponents say…

Published on August 26, 2022 By InDEPTH

The search for undiscovered submerged caves is often more challenging than the exploration itself.  Within several years of finishing my standard cave diving training, my desire to find and explore underwater caves was insatiable. Sidemount configuration was already something I was intrigued by and soon experimenting with. …

Published on June 16, 2023 By InDEPTH

Rebreather technology has enabled cave explorers to extend their underwater envelope significantly deeper and longer. As a result, a few teams are pushing beyond the practical limits of open circuit bailout and so have turned to bailout rebreathers. But they are not without challenges, as Tim Blömeke, who dives into the latest research and field experience, explains.

Published on September 16, 2022 By InDEPTH

Explorer Steve Lambert reports on the latest exploration push at Peacock 3, aka P3, in Wes Skiles Peacock Springs State Park, enabled by long range scooters, CHO2ptima rebreathers, electric heat, and a deco habitat with scrubber. Having teamed up with Karst Underwater Research (KUR), Lambert and friends have now pushed P3 penetration to 2286 m/7500 ft, at depths to 61m/200 ft with run times in excess of 5-6 hours. Scoop that booty!

Published on July 22, 2022 By InDEPTH

Rumors of a deep connection between the Crypt, a collapsed tunnel in Peacock Springs discovered by Sheck Exley in 1975, and lower Orange Groove, both located in Wes Skiles Peacock Springs State Park, Florida, only served to entice explorer Steve Lambert, who was determined to find the truth, after his team’s success extending Peacock III. Here is his story featuring a well-known cast of underground characters including Woody Jasper, Frank McNamara…

Published ago on May 10, 2023 By InDEPTH

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida’s natural springs are a unique resource. Each day, billions of gallons of crystal clear fresh water flow out of 700+ spring heads. The water is a cool, 72 degrees year-round and they attract millions of visitors in the hot Florida summers.

Before this water emerges from the spring head, it had to travel though a maze of underground rivers known as the Floridan aquifer…

Posted: Apr 22, 2021 / 12:41 PM EDT

WEEKI WACHEE SPRINGS, Fla. — (WFLA) — Our delicate Floridan aquifer is a matrix of tunnels that flow silently under our feet every day. The Karst Underwater Research group –or KUR– works to explore new areas and document the miles of caves that our drinking water is pulled from One part of documentation is filming these caves that are hundreds of feet below the surface…

Posted: Feb 18, 2022 / 08:12 AM EST

DADE CITY, Fla. (WFLA) — The cave diving community lost a true modern-day explorer this past week. Brett Hemphill of Dade City was diving with his team of explorers with the Karst Underwater Research Group in Phantom Springs Cave in west Texas on Oct 4…

Posted: Feb 18, 2022 / 08:12 AM EST

AMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Brett Hemphill, an experienced cave diver from Dade City is being remembered by his friends and family.

Hemphill never surfaced from a cave dive in Texas in early October…

Posted: Oct 20, 2023 / 01:41 PM EDT
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