What is an Oxygen Concentrator?

The Government of India is to import 10,000 oxygen concentrators.

What is an Oxygen Concentrator?

An oxygen concentrator concentrates oxygen from the atmosphere.

Working of Oxygen Concentrator

  • The atmospheric air has 78% of nitrogen and 21% of oxygen. The Oxygen Concentrator accumulates air, filters through a sieve sending the nitrogen back in to the air and collects oxygen alone.
  • The oxygen in the oxygen concentrator is compressed and dispensed through a cannula.
  • The oxygen is 90% to 95% pure.
  • A pressure valve in the concentrators help to regulate the supply of oxygen from 1 to 10 litres per minute.

How is oxygen from Oxygen Concentrator different from Medical Oxygen?

  • The Oxygen from the concentrators is not as pure as the Liquid Medical Oxygen. However, it is pure enough for mild and moderate COVID-19 patients. It is suitable for patients who require oxygen saturation levels of 85% or above. The Oxygen Concentrators are not advisable for ICU patients.
  • The Oxygen Concentrators will provide only five to ten litres per minute. The critical patients will need 40 to 50 litres of oxygen per minute.
  • The Oxygen Concentrators are portable. On the other hand, the Liquid Medical Oxygen needs to be stored and transported in cryogenic tankers.
  • The Oxygen Concentrators only require a power source to draw in ambient air. On the other hand, the Liquid Medial Oxygen needs refilling.
  • The Oxygen Concentrators are largely one-time investment. They require Rs 40,000 to Rs 90,000. The cylinders costs Rs 8,000 to Rs 20,000.
  • The concentrators require minimal operating cost that includes electricity and routine maintenance. On the other hand, cylinders involve refilling costs and transportation costs.

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