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R. Lars
posted : October 14, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
I read about using an ultraviolet lamp during night dives in the following book:

http://www.amazon.com/Dolphin-Island-Arthur-C-Clarke/dp/0441152201/ref=sr_1_1?s=gateway&ie=UTF8&qid=1285685234&sr=8-1
http://www.amazon.de/Die-Delphininsel-Arthur-C-Clarke/dp/3453541251/ref=sr_1_1?s=gateway&ie=UTF8&qid=1285685167&sr=8-1
http://www.amazon.de/Die-Delphininsel-Arthur-C-Clarke/dp/3414128306/ref=sr_1_2?s=gateway&ie=UTF8&qid=1285685167&sr=8-2

Such an ultraviolet ("black light") lamp is supposed to give a spectacular view underwater by way of bio-fluorescence.

A colleague of mine found the following video which demonstrates this effect:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meczKORhpmo (1:20)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZueVxQ-tIYU (1:59)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjPjiYyia_Q (7:17)
or http://www.leddivelight.com/biofluorescent-night-dive-sunset-reef-east-end-of-grand-cayman/

In the meantime I found a suitable (standard white) LED diving lamp and a suitable UV LED and was able to modify the lamp accordingly.

Parts used:

"LED LENSER" diving lamp (up to 60m / 7 bar) with 4 AA batteries (6 V)
Drop-In - Module 1 Watt UV LED 390-405nm (see http://www.taschenlampen-papst.de/P60-Drop-In-1-Watt-UV-395-400-nm-LED-Schwarzlicht-Qualitaetskontrolle-Rissdetektion-Leckageortung-Forensik)
Arctic Silver Thermal Adhesive (see http://www.arcticsilver.com/pdf/appinstruct/asta/ins_asepxy.pdf)
Resistor 8.2 Ohms 5% 5W (actually it has around 8.5 Ohms, which is perfect in order to limit the current to between 0.27 A and 0.28 A, which corresponds to 1W at 3.6 V at the LED, when battery voltage is 6 V) to replace the original resistor of 3.3 Ohms

Costs: 65€ + 15€ + 11,50€ + 0,70€
Shipping: 12€ + 2€
Total: 106,20€

Maybe this will inspire you to do the same.

Happy diving!

Best regards,
LarsB

 
Lard
posted : November 3, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
Also have a look at issue 57 of the Underwater Photographer Nov/Dec, available on line, shows some great photos.


 
R. Lars
posted : November 22, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
Dear Lard,
thanks a lot for the hint!
I will definitely have a look!
Cheers, LarsB

 
R. Lars
posted : November 22, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
A first night dive with this lamp at the [url=http://maps.google.nl/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=Strandpaviljoen+%22Stormvogel%22,+Oostvoorne&sll=51.928972,4.08318&sspn=0.024187,0.066047&ie=UTF8&hq=strandpaviljoen+stormvogel&hnear=Oostvoorne,+Westvoorne,+South+Holland&ll=51.933259,4.081078&spn=0.188188,0.528374&t=h&z=12]Oostvoornse Meer[/url] was not very convincing, first of all because there was almost no life to see in the first place, second because the visibility was low, and third I suspect that the wavelength (around 400 nm, i.e., still pretty much in the range of visible light) and power of the UV LED was suboptimal.

I therefore modified a second diving lamp, the "Underwater Kinetics UK Sunlight C4 eLED" (for about 120 Euros), with the best UV LEDs available on the market (with a wavelength of 365 nm), two Nichia LEDs of type NCSU033B (see also [url]http://www.nichia.co.jp/en/product/uvled.html[/url]) ordered directly from Japan, for about 82 Euros per piece (plus customs VAT of 31 Euros).

The results are indeed much better than with my first attempt; when testing e.g. with some Euro bills, much more features become visible than with the first lamp. The range of the lamp is also much greater (tested at night with a fluorescing target at the end of my garden).

Modifying the "UK C4 eLED" diving lamp is straightforward: remove the white LEDs, and glue the new UV LEDs to the same place (e.g. with Arctic Silver Thermal Adhesive).
The electronic circuitry in the lamp provides a current source which can be configured to several different values (e.g. 0.7 A, 1.0 A, 1.3 A).
I left it in the "1.0 A" configuration it originally came with.

Although using the UV LEDs in parallel is not recommended in their specifications, the electronic circuit in the lamp left me no other choice (unless by modifying/duplicating the circuit, for which there is not much space in the lamp). Fortunately, both UV LEDs had very narrow tolerances, while one drew about 0.5 A, the other took about 0.52 A, which is still well within the specified limits.

Should you have any questions, I'd be glad to answer them.

 
R. Lars
posted : November 23, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
A dive buddy and work colleague of mine found the following video which demonstrates the bio-fluorescence under water:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meczKORhpmo (1:20)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZueVxQ-tIYU (1:59)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjPjiYyia_Q (7:17)
or http://www.leddivelight.com/biofluorescent-night-dive-sunset-reef-east-end-of-grand-cayman/

Enjoy!

 
R. Lars
posted : November 30, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
I found another video

[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78de8IoRY0M[/url] (2:31)

apparently using gear from NightSea:

[url]http://www.nightsea.com/bw-1_sp.htm[/url]
[url]http://www.nightsea.com/uklc.htm[/url]
[url]http://www.nightsea.com/bluestar_sp.htm[/url]

the first of which is very similar to [url=http://picasaweb.google.com/ostbey/HowToBuildYourOwnUltravioletDivingLamp2]my own construction[/url], but provides white light/UV light at the turn of the switch and not half/full power as in my case.

 
R. Lars
posted : November 30, 2010 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
My construction is slightly cheaper, though: 309 Euros x 1.3046 (current exchange rate) = US$ 403.12, whereas the BW-1D Dive Package costs US$ 495 minus US$ 30 for the BlueBlock Filter Visor and the Mask Strap Wrapper = US$ 465.

 
R. Lars
posted : September 9, 2011 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
Dear contributors to this project, dear divers,

I recently went to the Red Sea (Hurghada/Egypt) for diving and successfully tested my ultraviolet diving lamp.

You can find some pictures and videos of it here: [url]https://picasaweb.google.com/106199910917431710533/Hurghada2011[/url]

I first read about diving with ultraviolet lamps in the following book, during childhood (the book itself is from 1963!):

[url]http://www.amazon.com/Dolphin-Island-Arthur-C-Clarke/dp/0441152201/ref=sr_1_1?s=gateway&ie=UTF8&qid=1285685234&sr=8-1[/url]
[url]http://www.detlef-heinsohn.de/SF-boje5.JPG[/url]
[url]http://www.sundermeyer-online.de/SO/Images/Verlage/Boje/BOJE-Die-Delphininsel-100.jpg[/url]

In the beginning (2010), I didn't find any ultraviolet diving lamps for sale on the market, so I built (i.e., modified) two of my own:

[url]http://picasaweb.google.com/ostbey/HowToBuildYourOwnUltravioletDivingLamp[/url]
[url]http://picasaweb.google.com/ostbey/HowToBuildYourOwnUltravioletDivingLamp2[/url]

Here are the videos which a colleague and dive buddy of mine and me found about diving with ultraviolet lamps and bio-fluorescence:

[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HnL1xTKQjNw[/url] (10:06)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLMAyYHNeeQ[/url] (9:08)
[url]http://www.leddivelight.com/biofluorescent-night-dive-sunset-reef-east-end-of-grand-cayman/[/url] (7:17) or
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjPjiYyia_Q[/url] (7:17)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGWcoM7Apyc[/url] (5:24)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9GfctqCGKE[/url] (4:16)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHVI9vhgkXc[/url] (2:55)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78de8IoRY0M[/url] (2:31)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IbXgG37vlYw[/url] (2:20)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZueVxQ-tIYU[/url] (1:59)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meczKORhpmo[/url] (1:20)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2KXbOPxH5I[/url] (0:25)
[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oD4Z4RC_isc[/url] (0:25)

You might also find the following website interesting/inspiring: [url]http://www.uni-due.de/zoophysiologie[/url]

Later on I found a site in the U.S. where one can actually buy this kind of equipment (the one used in the 2:31 video [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78de8IoRY0M[/url] above):

[url]http://www.nightsea.com/bw-1_sp.htm[/url] - NightSea BW-1 Blue/White Dive Light
[url]http://www.nightsea.com/uklc.htm[/url] - Filters for UK Light Cannon
[url]http://www.nightsea.com/bluestar_sp.htm[/url] - BlueStar Light

Recently, I also discovered an article in a French online magazine about this topic with reference to a shop in France which also sells this kind of equipment:

[url]http://www.plongeur.com/[/url]
[url]http://www.plongeur.com/magazine/telechargement/[/url]
[url]http://www.plongeur-magazine.com/downloads/index.php?pcom-mag-01.pdf[/url]
pages 55-58 of 62 (page numbers according to Adobe Reader), or pages 108-115 (page numbers at the bottom of each page)
[url]http://www.plongimage.com/index.php?cPath=23_312&osCsid=75e75cc2ef5e5cac77017bdbe7d04616[/url]
[url]http://www.dyron.fr/page_article.php?id_article=77&cat_article=eclairage&language=2[/url]

Two other interesting articles (unrelated to bio-fluorescence) from the same magazine:

[url]http://www.plongeur-magazine.com/downloads/index.php?pcom-mag-01.pdf[/url]
"Maîtrisez la béance tubaire et dites adieu au Valsalva"
pages 47-49 of 62 (page numbers according to Adobe Reader), or pages 92-97 (page numbers at the bottom of each page)

[url]http://www.plongeur-magazine.com/downloads/index.php?pcom-mag-05.pdf[/url]
"Cette eau qui nous déshydrate"
pages 42-44 of 52 (page numbers according to Adobe Reader), or pages 82-87 (page numbers at the bottom of each page)

And another beautiful underwater photography magazine:
[url]http://www.uwpmag.com[/url]
The latest issue is always free, back issues cost money.

Enjoy!

Cheers,
Lars

 
R. Lars
posted : September 21, 2011 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
In case you would like to explore bio-fluorescence yourself, but don't want to build your own UV torch, [url=http://picasaweb.google.com/ostbey/HowToBuildYourOwnUltravioletDivingLamp2]as I did[/url]:

So far, I have found the following manufacturers of commercially available torches for underwater bio-fluorescence (electrical power in parentheses):

[url=http://www.nightsea.com/bw-1_sp.htm]http://www.nightsea.com/bw-1_sp.htm[/url] - NightSea BW-1 Blue/White Dive Light (3W)
[url=http://www.nightsea.com/uklc.htm]http://www.nightsea.com/uklc.htm[/url] - Filters for UK Light Cannon (10W)
[url=http://www.nightsea.com/bluestar_sp.htm]http://www.nightsea.com/bluestar_sp.htm[/url] - BlueStar Light (1W)

[url=http://www.plongimage.com/index.php?cPath=23_312&osCsid=75e75cc2ef5e5cac77017bdbe7d04616]http://www.plongimage.com/index.php?cPath=23_312&osCsid=75e75cc2ef5e5cac77017bdbe7d04616[/url]
[url=http://www.dyron.fr/page_article.php?id_article=77&cat_article=eclairage&language=2]http://www.dyron.fr/page_article.php?id_article=77&cat_article=eclairage&language=2[/url] (6x4=24W/12x4=48W, or 75W/130W halogen-equivalent)

[url=http://www.hartenberger.de/hartenberger.html?ledTechnik/001.html]http://www.hartenberger.de/hartenberger.html?ledTechnik/001.html[/url] (mini compact LCD: 7x3.5W=28W, 21x2.5W=50W; maxi compact LCD: 7x3.5W=28W, 21x3W=60W)

All these lamps use blue LEDs instead of UV LEDs, with peak wavelengths around 450 nm.
Allegedly, UV does not excite the red fluorescing proteins ([url=http://www.bild-der-wissenschaft.de/bdw/bdwlive/heftarchiv/index2.php?object_id=32128252]http://www.bild-der-wissenschaft.de/bdw/bdwlive/heftarchiv/index2.php?object_id=32128252[/url] "Dummerweise regt UV aber nicht die Rot-Fluoreszenz an").
I personally suspect that it is also a question of safety (blue light is safer to handle than UV) and price (blue LEDs are probably cheaper - for a given desired output - than UV LEDs).

The Hartenberger fluorescent lamps are also used by [url=http://www.uni-tuebingen.de/en/faculties/faculty-of-science/departments/biologie/institute/evolutionecology/groups/animal-evolutionary-ecology/people/nico-michiels.html]Prof. Nico Michiels[/url] of the University of Tübingen for his research.

[url=http://www.uni-due.de/zoophysiologie/]Prof. Horst Grunz[/url] has built [url=http://www.uni-due.de/zoophysiologie/Seiten/GRUNZScuba2.HTM]his own[/url] based on equipment from [url=http://www.tillytec.de/]TillyTec[/url].
TillyTec also offers a [url=http://www.tillytec.de/de/produkte/lampenkoepfe/mpl-500uv.html]UV lamp head[/url] with a single UV LED and a halogen-equivalent power of 10W.

Good luck and happy exploration!

 
R. Lars
posted : September 21, 2011 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
Hi Lard, you are right!

Very nice pictures in issue #57 of http://www.uwpmag.com/?buy=57
(See also http://ejlabs.net/tmp/UwP57.pdf) on pages 56-59.

 
R. Lars
posted : September 22, 2011 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
Or see also the author's web page at https://picasaweb.google.com/111251440649789339400/KompoljskaJamaUV02#

 
R. Lars
posted : September 28, 2011 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
See http://guest.engelschall.com/~sb/fluo-diving/ for the complete collection of information about fluorescent night dives, which will be kept up to date as more information becomes available.

 
R. Lars
posted : July 5, 2014 Post subject: Night dives with an ultraviolet lamp ("blacklight") - taking advantage of bio-fluorescence
Even more great info about underwater fluorescence and fluorescence diving can be found here:

http://www.fluomedia.org/science/
http://www.fluopedia.org/publications/

 
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