The US Navy needed a safer way to distribute lithium hydroxide (LiOH) crystals in the event of a submarine power failure. When a sub fails, the air support system may also fail. Before Casco was approached to help, the emergency response for the submarine personnel was to sprinkle LiOH crystals on the floor of the vessel to cleanse the air and provide oxygen (LiOH converts carbon dioxide into oxygen). The crystals themselves are caustic and will burn human skin, so this process was not safe for submarine personnel.
Casco partnered with Battelle, the world’s largest independent research and development organization, to create a solution for this critical problem. Together, Battelle and Casco chose a breathable material, and a custom sealing solution to produce a curtain-shaped pouch to hold the LiOH crystals. In the event of a power failure, crew members open the curtain and pour LiOH crystals into the channels. The sealed channels prevent the crystals from coming in contact with the individual, but the fabric used is breathable to allow the chemical reaction to take place. The curtain is then attached to the wall using simple wire ties to keep the floor space safe and passable.
Just recently, our Company President was speaking to a newly graduated High School Senior who has joined the Navy and will be serving on submarines. When he found out about Casco’s curtain-shaped product that holds the lithium hydroxide crystals, he was relieved to know he would be safe in the event of a submarine power failure. Casco is proud to continue to produce these safe and quality curtains, to keep our country’s service men and women safe.