The Unlimited Duration Excursion Tables (Table 157 and Table 158) allow
multiple diver excursions to be conducted during the course of a saturation dive.
When using these excursion procedures, the diving supervisor need only be
concerned with the depth of the divers. To use these tables when planning the
dive, select a chamber storage depth in a range that allows diver excursions shallower or deeper than the storage depth. The actual depth of the work site or PTC
may be significantly different from the storage depth.
When using Table 158, enter the table at the deepest depth attained at any time
within the last 48 hours. While the DDC may be at 400 fsw, if one diver had
reached a depth of 460 fsw during an inwater excursion, the maximum upward
excursion depth for the divers is 360 fsw instead of 307 fsw. After completing
work at one depth and then compressing DDC to a deeper storage depth, unlimited
downward or upward excursions are permitted immediately upon reaching the
new storage depth. When decompressing the DDC from a deeper depth using standard
saturation decompression procedures, unlimited downward excursions, as
defined in Table 157, may begin immediately upon reaching the new chamber
storage depth. A minimum of 48 hours shall elapse at the new storage depth before
any upward excursions may be made.
Example. After decompression from 1,000 fsw to 400 fsw, the maximum
downward excursion is 105 fsw. After 48 hours have elapsed at 400 fsw, a full
upward excursion of 93 fsw to 307 fsw is permitted.
Example. After decompression from 1,000 fsw to 400 fsw, the maximum
downward excursion is 105 fsw. After 48 hours have elapsed at 400 fsw, a full
upward excursion of 93 fsw to 307 fsw is permitted.
If less than 48 hours is spent at the new storage depth, the maximum upward
excursion is based on the deepest depth attained in the preceding 48 hours.
Example. Decompression from a 1,000 fsw dive has been conducted to the 400
fsw depth. Twentyfour hours have been spent at 400 fsw. The dive log shows that
the deepest depth attained in the preceding 48 hours is 496 fsw. The maximum
upward excursion from Table 158, based on a 496 fsw depth, is to 396 fsw (500 –
104) allowing a maximum of a 4 fsw upward excursion. After 36 hours have
elapsed at 400 fsw, the dive log shows that the deepest depth attained in the
preceding 48 hours was 448 fsw. From Table 158, the shallowest excursion depth
is now 351 fsw.
The ascent rate should not exceed 60 fsw/min during an excursion. When it is
detected that a diver is ascending faster than 60 fsw/min, the diver shall immediately
stop and wait until enough time has elapsed to return to the 60 fsw/min
schedule. The diver may then resume ascent at a rate not to exceed 60 fsw/min
from that depth.
If storage depth falls between the depths listed in Table 157, use the next shallower
depth (e.g., if the storage depth is 295 fsw, enter Table 157 at 290 fsw). If
storage depth falls between the depths listed in Table 158, use the next deeper
depth (e.g., if the storage depth is 295 fsw, enter Table 158 at 300 fsw).
TABLE 157 Unlimited Duration Downward Excursion Limits.

TABLE 158 Unlimited Duration Upward Excursion Limits.

Example 1. The chamber was compressed to 400 fsw from the surface. The initial
depth in Table 157 is 400 fsw. The maximum downward excursion for an
unlimited period not requiring decompression is 105 fsw, allowing a maximum
diver depth of 505 fsw. If the diver descends to 450 fsw, the maximum depth
achieved from the 400 fsw storage depth will be 450 fsw. Table 158 at 450 fsw allows a 99 fsw upward excursion to a depth of 351 fsw. Thus, these divers may
move freely between the depths of 351 and 450 fsw while at a storage depth of 400
fsw.
Example 2. At a storage depth of 600 fsw, during which dives were made to 650
fsw, the maximum upward excursion that may by made to begin saturation
decompression is:

If less than 48 hours have elapsed since the 650 fsw excursion, Table 158
allows a maximum upward excursion of 119 fsw from a deepest depth of 650
fsw to a depth of 531 fsw.

If more than 48 hours have elapsed since the excursion, the maximum upward
excursion allowed is 115 fsw from 600 fsw to 485 fsw.
Example 3. At the new shallower storage depth of 350 fsw, divers conduct an
excursion to 400 fsw. Using the deepest depth of 400 fsw achieved during storage
at 350 fsw, a maximum upward ascent from Table 158 of 93 fsw to a depth of 307
fsw is allowed, provided the chamber and the divers have been at the storage depth
of 350 fsw for at least 48 hours. Otherwise, no upward excursion is permitted.
Actual PTC diving operations are dictated by the Unit’s
operating instructions. In conducting these operations, experience indicates that a
maximum inwater time of 4 hours is optimal for diver efficiency. Longer dive
times result in a loss of diver effectiveness because of fatigue and exposure, while
shorter dives will significantly increase the time at depth for the completion of
operations. Standard practice is to rotate inwater divers with the PTC operators,
allowing two 4hour dives to be conducted during a single PTC excursion to the
work site. Proper positioning of the PTC near the objective is important in
ensuring that the diver does not exceed the maximum permitted excursion limits
(Figure 158).
FIGURE 158 PTC Placement Relative to Excursion Limits.

A brief overview of PTC deployment procedures
follows:
1. For initial pressurization, the PTC, with internal hatch open, is usually mated
to the DDC. Divers enter the DDC and secure the hatches.
2. The DDC and PTC are pressurized to bottom depth. The divers transfer to the
PTC and secure the DDC and PTC hatches after them.
3. The trunk space is vented to the atmosphere and then the PTC is deployed and
lowered to working depth. The hatch is opened when seawater and internal
PTC pressures are equal. The divers don diving equipment and deploy from
the PTC.
4. Divers return to the PTC and secure the hatch. The PTC is raised and mated to
the DDC, and the divers transfer to the DDC. Until they are decompressed in
the DDC, the divers rotate between periods of living in the DDC and working on the bottom. Deep underwater projects requiring moderate bottom time or
diver activities involving work at various depths are conducted in the
saturation mode with excursion dives. The PTC and DDC are pressurized to a
storage depth within the ascent and descent limits of the Unlimited Duration
Excursion Tables (Table 157 and Table 158), maximizing diving efficiency
for deep, long dives. Once tissue saturation is reached, decompression
requirements no longer increase.