Just about everyone has seen Skydivers jumping out of planes before, at least in movies or commercials and maybe even in person.
However, when it comes to the skydiving equipment used in parachuting, most of us have little information. Sure, we all know there is a parachute involved but beyond that, not much else.
The skydiving equipment used to safely return to earth comes in several basic parts. The first part is something we are all familiar with, the parachute. This is called a canopy in skydiving jargon.
Most canopies used today are made of high strength nylon. Another piece of skydiving equipment used is the drogue chute. This is a small parachute held in the skydivers hand when he jumps.
Once he has reached a certain altitude he will throw the drogue chute into the wind. The drogue chute inflates and pulls out the main canopy. If the main canopy fails to deploy for some reason, tangled lines for example, the skydiver will cut it away.
After this is accomplished he will call upon another piece of his skydiving equipment, his reserve parachute. With this reserve parachute he can safely land. The container is a harness the skydiver tightly straps on to his body. It holds the main canopy, reserve parachute and keeps the skydiver attached to the canopy.
A new piece of skydiving equipment is the automatic activation device or AAD. The AAD has not been around so many years but has already saved many lives. If for some reason a Skydiver becomes unconscious or unable to deploy his own parachute, the AAD will deploy the reserve parachute automatically. Most AAD’s trigger the reserve parachute around 750 feet.
To control the direction of his parachute, a skydiver has another tool in his skydiving equipment, toggles.
The toggles are two nylon ropes. When the parachute deploys, he puts one toggle in his left hand, the other in his right.
The two toggles are connected to additional lines attached to the rear of the parachute. When he pulls the left toggle it pulls down the left rear of the parachute.
When the right toggle is pulled, the right rear of the parachute will come down. These toggles allow the skydiver to stear his parachute.
There are many other smaller items to skydiving equipment, but, to discover them all, you will have to go skydiving for yourself!