Nordic Scuba  |  International Scuba  |  Commercial & Archaeo Diving  |  SSBA  |  Medicine

Scuba diving

There are several archaeological investigation methods underwater, e.g. mini submarine, ROV, and SSBA. But the most common method is scuba diving, which is also a popular recreation sport. Scuba divers contribute a lot to the official underwater archaeology, in various projects.

Recreational diving in Northern Europe is a cool thing, often ice cold, so a dry suit is necessary. In Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland all wrecks older than 100 years are legally protected – you may dive on them but not touch anything. In Finland you must also notify the coast guard before a wreck dive. On the Finnish province island Åland, it is generally forbidden to dive anywhere, except for a few places assigned by licensed dive centres. For scuba diving, both DIN (200 and 300 bar) and Yoke (200 bar) connectors are used.

Here is more scuba diving info for the Nordic region:

International scuba diving







Commercial & Archaeological diving

Unfortunately, the rules vary from country to country: To participate in official Swedish underwater archaeology projects, the “A Certificate” is needed, which is only issued by the Swedish Navy. This certificate is not compatible with e.g. the British HSE. Norway requires the Norwegian “S Certificate”.
But Denmark and Finland require no commercial qualification for volunteers to participate in archaeology projects. Diving clubs and non-vocational groups are usually free to investigate, without these certificates, as long as they follow the legislation of protected sites. Thus diving clubs in e.g. Sweden are quite active participating in wreck documentation projects, as long as they don't touch, excavate or recover objects.


SSBA (surface supplied breathing apparatus) means that the diver receives air from the surface, through a hose. The diver wears a full face mask or a helmet, and has voice communication to the surface. The diver also carries a backup system that can be switched to at anytime. SSBA is also called SAS (surface air supply) or Hookah (from a 1955 trade mark). SSBA requires special training. Popular systems include the AGA / Interspiro and EXO / Kirby Morgan / DSI systems.

Diving medicine

thanks to SUB Sandviken for helmet diver image, page rev by P.Å. jul '12

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