At the University of South Florida, Professor Jay Dean has equipment that synthesizes two exotic technologies in order to examine something very basic indeed: how oxygen interacts with tissues. The two technological bits are a hyperbaric chamber and an atomic force microscope (AFM). This allows Dean and his colleagues to examine, at an exceedingly small scale, what happens when tissue is exposed to oxygen at a variety of partial pressures. The Office of Naval Research is interested; according to the article, the occasionally fatal seizures that divers using rebreathers experience is a major cause of concern.
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