Medical Application: Oxygen Concentrators

What is an oxygen concentrator?

It is a medical device that is used to deliver oxygen to those who require it due to low levels of oxygen in their blood. Concentrators are powered by batteries or conventional electrical wall outlets.

A concentrator is made up of a compressor, sieve bed filter and circuit boards. In comparison with an oxygen tank that has a set amount of oxygen a concentrator filters in air, compresses it and delivers air continuously. The air supply should never run out like an oxygen tank would as long as electrical power is provided.

How does it work?

An oxygen concentrator is similar to how a window air conditioning unit works. It takes in air, modifies it and delivers it in a new form. An oxygen concentrator takes in air and purifies it for use by people requiring medical oxygen. The 5 steps in Oxygen Concentration:

  1. The concentrator takes in air from its surroundings
  2. It then compresses the air, while the cooling mechanism prevents overheating of the concentrator
  3. The concentrator removes nitrogen from the air by way of a filter and sieve beds
  4. The concentrator uses an electronic interface to adjust delivery settings
  5. The delivery of the purified oxygen is by use of a nasal cannula or mask

Download this application note to learn more about how pressure sensors are used in oxygen concentrators.