“Whoever neglects learning in his youth loses the Past and is dead to the Future.”
Euripides (480-406 B.C. – Greek Playwright)

The Principals of Zenocean are proud to have learned their craft from their past experiences and the organisations created by Subsea Pioneers, such as, Henri Delauze 1929-2012.

Knowledge and inspirational thoughts used throughout our range of subsea services combined with the experience of our personnel is central to what we at Zenocean can offer to the market in the present, and will play an even greater part in the subsea market of tomorrow. The skills and knowledge of our people past and present, along with technological advances, influence the process of understanding where our company will sit in tomorrow’s world … assessing where it can be, deciding where it wants to be and then managing the changes. This is a necessity for survival in a rapidly changing environment.

Deane’s Patent Diving Dress

In 1828 John Dean patented “Deane’s Patent Diving Dress.” it was a modified fire helmet design with larger viewing ports and the effects of buoyancy was countered with weighted shoes. A heavy fabric suit was worn to protect the diver from the elements, but the helmet did not attach to the suit, so if the diver bent over, or fell, the helmet would flood and he would drown. However, the Deane’s system was very successful. In 1836, Deane’s produced what was probably the first diving manual.

Henri Delauze

“If I had my time over again, I would do exactly the same as last time”
Henri Delauze

Frenchman Henri Delauze was considered one of the world’s greatest underwater explorers. Delauze met Jacques Cousteau in the mid-1950s and became part of his dive team. In 1961 he returned to Marseille and founded Compagnie Maritime d’Expertises, COMEX, a highly successful company that specializes in engineering and deep diving operations. Comex was responsible for pioneering deep saturation diving.

Henri Germain Delauze made a series of record-breaking descents in the bathyscaphe Archimède. On 25 July 1962 he reached a depth of 9,545 metres to become ‘the deepest-diving Frenchman’; still holding the record today.

First Recorded Divers

Diving has been taking place since primitive man was forced to forage for food in the sea, but the first recorded divers are represented in Assyrian drawings from circa 900 B.C. of armed divers using small breathing containers made from animal skin.

Leonardo Da Vinci

While working in Venice, in 1500, da Vinci designed his scuba gear for sneak attacks on enemy ships from underwater. At the top of the device is a float with a domed shape preventing water from entering the breathing tubes. The tubes contain an inlet and outlet valve, and the sac below the chin of the user was designed to collect waste.

In 1535 the creation and use of the earliest functional diving helmet is credited to the Italian physicist, Guglielmo de Lorena who dived on two of Caligula’s sunken galleys using a design by Leonardo da Vinci.

A Compressed Air Tank

The Industrial Revolution saw many inventions and leading the way in technological breakthroughs is Europe and America. In 1825 William James, an Englishman produced a workable design in which compressed air was carried in a circular iron reservoir around the waist. This device required no surface support and was totally independent. Unfortunately there is no known record of James diving with the equipment, so credit must go to Charles Condert who built a similar device and successfully used it many times in New York’s East River.

ROV technology development

The US Navy funded most of the early ROV technology development in the 1960s into what was then named a “Cable-Controlled Underwater Recovery Vehicle” (CURV). This created the capability to perform deep-sea rescue operation and recover objects from the ocean floor. Building on this technology base; the offshore oil & gas industry created the work-class ROVs to assist in the development of offshore oil fields. More than a decade after they were first introduced, ROVs became essential in the 1980s when much of the new offshore development exceeded the reach of human divers.

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