AirBuddy makes diving as easy as riding a bike

Media release | 5 March 2018

Sydney startup company AirBuddy has developed the world’s most compact grab-and-go diving solution that could soon be seen on beaches and oceans across the world thanks to support from the NSW Government-backed Jobs for NSW.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Small Business John Barilaro said the Tamarama-based AirBuddy, which has received a $100,000 Jobs for NSW grant, has invented a recreational diving device that removes the need for SCUBA gear and has the potential to revolutionise diving across the world.

“This is a fantastic invention which was born out of a Tamarama family’s passion for diving, the ocean and making diving accessible for everyone – not just the professionals, Mr Barilaro said.

“Jobs for NSW is helping AirBuddy kickstart commercial-scale manufacture of the AirBuddy to fulfil the $400,000 worth of pre-orders attracted through crowd funding.”

“This is another example of Jobs for NSW supporting highly innovative companies that are emerging right across NSW to scale up and create new, sustainable jobs.”

AirBuddy director Jan Kadlec said the idea for the device was drawn from the frustration of spending two hours going to a dive centre to pick up and drop off SCUBA tanks every time the family wanted to go for a dive.

“My whole family are engineers, while other kids were out playing soccer I was turning parts on a lathe, so we decided to come up with a solution,” he said.

“AirBuddy is the world’s smallest and lightest surface-supplied breathing apparatus. It is a battery powered compressor which draws the air from the surface and stores it in a red inflatable ring.

“The air compressor pressurises surface air that is then delivered to the diver through the supply hose with a regulator.

“The vision is that one day you will be able to go and dive as easily as riding a bicycle with a grab-and-go solution for diving. We want to create an option which is easy and simple to use so that more people can experience the ocean.

“The Jobs for NSW support has been very helpful in terms of putting all the money together to start production. Every single dollar is a huge help. We are driven by passion - our vision really is to start seeing AirBuddy on beaches around the world as a common product."

AirBuddy device and diver