Development of the amigo
The amigo is the result of years of development from an initial idea of how to prevent dive buddy separation. The proof of concept models were functionally named the Buddy Locator, but as the design evolved to a sleek, effective and affordable SCUBA navigation aid the name has evolved too.
Until the formation of Aquacoustics Limited in 2010 the amigo was a leisure time electronics hobby and an excuse to do what I love - go diving!
As the project has progressed it has presented a number of technically challenging issues that have been resolved through research, hardware and software engineering design and at times an iterative process of trial and error.
The most demanding of these technical issues has been overcoming the adverse effects of marine noise on ultrasonic signal reception. Although the phenomena of marine noise is widely recognized it is not well understood and literature on the subject is limited. Application-specific instrumentation was designed and constructed to quantify marine noise. This was followed by many hours of analysis, computer simulation, design, construction and testing. Field trials on the 29 of September 2010 confirmed that the amigo had at last truly overcome marine noise.
The amigo hardware and software are subject to patent protection and copyright.
The amigo has been subjected to all manner of laboratory testing, physical abuse and an extensive period of user field trials in diverse and demanding New Zealand dive conditions. The results from these tests and trials have been incorporated into the design you see today.
At the outset of this project Aquacoustics Limited set out to produce a low-cost and effective device that would overcome diver separation and enhance dive safety. We recognize that here in New Zealand some divers baulk at the cost of a $10 inflatable safety sausage so cost is critical. Our target retail price is US$150 for two units (hey - they work in pairs). Our business model is based on projected volume sales with fixed margins. This means that every cent that we can trim from the production cost is passed on to you.
Please bare with us as we try and save you a few more dollars for the most effective SCUBA safety device that you could ever hope to own.