Today we as a country are undergoing the second wave of the pandemic that has resulted in the overburdened supply chain of oxygen and at the same time, the current situation has made us understand the importance of oxygen for the wellbeing of human society as a whole. In this situation when people are looking for an uninterrupted oxygen supply for their loved ones, few others are trying to encash the situation. So, we being a part of society felt that it is important that you don’t fall prey to such people who are willing to encash your situation. In this article” A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India “we will share all about the oxygen concentrators available in India so that you don’t lose your money and fall prey to the false promises of low-quality oxygen concentrator brands.
We heartedly pray to god that none of you go through any such situation in the current condition when most of the cities are out of bed in their respective hospitals and even it is becoming challenging to get an oxygen cylinder for those who are feeling helpless to breathe. However, in case of need, we believe that proper knowledge will definitely help you make the right decision and save your time to look for any other options in the scenario.
What is an Oxygen Concentrator?
An oxygen concentrator is a portable device that can continuously generate high concentrated oxygen (up to 95%) by taking input from the environment and separating nitrogen from the air bypassing the input air through a molecular sieve (Zeolite).
However, even the best oxygen concentrators have the limited ability to supply oxygen that ranges between 2 liters to 7 Litres capacity which is not sufficient for critical cases where the blood oxygen level is below 85 as a person having blood oxygen level below 85 might require up to 40 liters of oxygen flow depending on the level of criticality.
The oxygen cylinders don’t have any such limitation as the oxygen cylinders are filled with up to 150 Kg of pressure which can be manually regulated as per the need of the patient.
How an oxygen concentrator works?
Until now, I believe that you understand when an oxygen concentrator will be useful for you and I hope that now you can easily decide if you need to invest your time and money looking for the oxygen concentrators or the oxygen cylinders if in need.
The best oxygen concentrator machine consists of following parts namely:
The air compressor in your best oxygen concentrator machine intakes air from the environment (80% nitrogen+20% oxygen), compresses it to feed into the system.
During air compression the temperature of the air increases and hence it needs to be passed through the heat exchanger to reduce the temperature of the compressed air to the desired level.
The compressed air is Stored in the surge tank at desired pressure for further processing as required. The surge tank also acts as a cushion for the continuous and uninterrupted supply of the air to the system for further processing.
Molecular Sieve Beds
The molecular sieve bed filters are one of the most important parts of the oxygen concentrator machine as it separates the nitrogen from the air to produce up to 95% of pure oxygen. The molecular sieve bed filters are made up of a material called zeolite which is a 6-sided microscopic cube with a hole on each side.
The zeolite material has the property to absorb nitrogen from the air leaving oxygen to pass through it. Once the material has absorbed the nitrogen in the pressurized compartment the compartment is allowed to de-pressurize in the subsequent cycle by allowing it to vent to the atmosphere. This allows the zeolite to release the absorbed nitrogen to the atmosphere after which it becomes ready for the next absorption cycle.
As you can see, each molecular sieve bed absorbs nitrogen in one cycle while it needs the next cycle to regenerate itself by releasing the absorbed nitrogen into the atmosphere. In the typical best oxygen generator machine, there are 2 molecular sieve beds in parallel in order to continuously generate oxygen while working. Each of these molecular sieve beds works alternatively to generate an uninterrupted oxygen supply.
Each zeolite molecules have an efficiency rate which indicates the amount of time it needs to absorb the nitrogen from the air. This ability of the zeolite molecule also limits the output and oxygen concentration level of the best oxygen concentrator machine. This means, as we increase the flow of air through the molecule sieve bed filter, the oxygen concentration of the output will reduce as the zeolite molecules will get much less time to absorb the nitrogen from the airflow.
The product tank also known as the oxygen tank is used to collect the pressurized oxygen and it acts as the oxygen collecting tank. The product tank helps to maintain the uninterrupted supply of the oxygen as per the demand.
Flow adjustment valve
At the end of the system is the flow control valve which can be used to control the oxygen flow from the system.
Technology Behind the Onboard oxygen Generating system (OBOGS) in Tejas Aircrafts
In the ongoing shortage of oxygen supply in India due to exponential increase in demand, recently DRDO has been in the news for providing the technology to continuously generate oxygen with the help of oxygen plants being installed in various hospitals all over India.
This technology is said to be used in our indigenous developed fighter aircraft Tejas in India and now will no doubt help to reduce the challenge of providing adequate oxygen in the hospitals. This technology is also using the zeolite beds as used in the oxygen concentrators but the oxygen plants being installed in hospitals with the technology will going to generate at a much larger pace which will be sufficient to take care of up to 190 patients in a row.
Why the price of oxygen concentrators in India is so high?
In India, we don’t manufacturer oxygen concentrators. Most of the best oxygen concentrator machines currently available in India are being imported from China. It is very important that, if you are planning to buy an oxygen concentrator due to the need of the time, do check the certifications while buying. Due to very high demand, many local brands have started listing their oxygen concentrators imported from China without any certifications on online marketplaces and even in the local markets.
Remember, currently, the oxygen concentrators are life-saving equipment’s and a low-quality oxygen concentrator might not be able to generate oxygen of defined concentration (90-95%) hence leading to critical issues if used with the patient of low oxygen percentage.
There are few Indian companies who are planning to start manufacturing oxygen concentrators in India but no doubt it will take time to be on the ground. Until then, stay updated and only select the oxygen concentrators from good brands like BPL, Philips, etc.
Don’t Get Confused: Oxygen Concentrators Vs Nebulizers
Well in the current situation people are even selling nebulizers in the name of oxygen concentrators. But it is of utmost importance that both these devices are very different from each other. As the name suggests the oxygen concentrators are designed to generate high concentrated oxygen (Up to 95%) while the nebulizers are designed to mix the medicine with the compressed air and regulate the airflow to your lungs. The compressed air from the nebulizers is normal compressed air taken from the atmosphere which contains around 20% oxygen concentration as compared to the oxygen concentrator machines which can generate oxygen with up to 95% concentration.
Philips Respironics Oxygen Concentrator Machine
A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India
Philips is a well-known brand in electrical appliances and no doubt it also manufactures and markets health care equipment under Philips Health Care. Some of the features of the Respironics oxygen concentrator machine model is:
- Lightweight, 14 Kgs
- Can provide up to 5 LPM of oxygen flow
- Comes with/without the option of oxygen purity indicator
- Continuous flow oxygen concentrator machine
- Comes with a brand warranty of 3 years
- Provides up to 93% purity even at a 5 LPM flow rate
- The Philips oxygen concentration machine can be used with 1KV UPS for backup
- Imported from the USA
- Filters need to be changed after every 5000 hours of operation
- Being imported from the USA, some consumers are complaining about warranty issue in India
Bpl Homecare Oxygen Concentrators Oxy 5 Neo
A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India
BPL is another old medical equipment brand having a very good track record in India for a long time. The homecare oxygen concentrator machine by BPL is designed to be used in the home after taking medical consultation from the doctor. Some of the important features of the BPL oxygen concentrator machine is:
- Features built-in nebulizer
- Displays operational hours on the large display
- Lightweight, 2.6 Kgs
- Comes with 1-year brand warranty
- Equipped with safety features like high-pressure safety valve, power failure alarm, fault self-detection.
- Quiet and user friendly
- Timer function for auto shutdown
- Brand warranty of 1-year
- 5LPM oxygen supply with up to 93% purity
- No oxygen purity display
DEDAKJ DE-1A New Design Portable Lightweight Oxygen Concentrator
The Dedakj is a Chinese brand that also has its company registered in Germany. No doubt being of Chinese origin, the cost of the oxygen concentrator is at a much lower cost with respect to the oxygen concentrator brands from the USA.
Some of the features of the Dedakj portable oxygen concentrators are:
- Lightweight, 6.5 kgs
- Sleep function for supplement oxygen
- Save power mode
- Can supply 1-7 LPM oxygen with variable concentration of 30% to 93%
- Comes with remote control to operate with ease
- The advanced cooling system makes it suitable to use at night
- Low noise level at 45db
- No inbuilt oxygen purity meter to display the actual concentration of the oxygen generated
OXYMED OXYGEN CONCENTRATOR MINI PORTABLE OXYGEN CONCENTRATOR
A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India
The Oxymed oxygen concentration machine is another product available in India which has been imported from China. You will notice, currently, in India, most of the oxygen concentrator machines are being imported from China or the USA. So, as of now, we don’t have any Indian substitute for Oxygen concentrators and so even on our list, you can find very few oxygen concentrators that are actually made in the USA or Germany.
Some of the features of the Oxymed oxygen concentrator machines are:
- Weight: 24 Kgs
- Can supply up to 5LPM oxygen
- Runs on electricity, no power backup feature provided
- Inbuilt nebulizer, oxygen purity meter
- Lightweight and portable
- Has in-built oxygen purity indicator
- Comes with 6 months manufacturer’s warranty
- Positive reviews from the consumers
- No battery backup for emergency
Nidek Nuvo 10 Oxygen Concentrator
The Nidek is an Indian company but we don’t know from where the company imports its oxygen concentrators. However, being an Indian brand, we believe Nidek as a brand does have comparatively better after-sales service. We recommend you talk to the representatives before placing the order for a better product experience.
Some of the important features of the Nidek oxygen concentrator machines are:
- The strongest oxygen concentrator model with up to 10 LPM supply capacity
- The machine is FDA, CE and ISO certified which really makes it on of the most reliable Oxygen concentration machine brand.
- Easy design makes it easy to access replaceable components of the oxygen concentrator machine.
- Can supply oxygen purity of 90% +/-5%
- Noise: 47db
- Weight: 13.6 Kgs
- Reliable: FDA, CE, ISO certified oxygen concentrator machine
- Can supply oxygen between 1-10 LPM
- Fitted with high efficiency compressor
- Outlet pressure up to 15psi
- No oxygen purity indicator available onboard
Buyer’s Guide: A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India
So, until now we have discussed all about the oxygen concentrators. But it is also important to know and understand different points that one should look at while planning to buy an oxygen concentrator. So let us quickly dive into the pointwise details
Types of Oxygen Concentrators
The oxygen concentrators can be classified under two board categories namely:
As the name suggests, the pulse flow oxygen concentrators are ideal for people who need very limited assistance during breathing. These types of oxygen concentrators are generally providing a pulse of oxygen that gets activated while inhalation. However, it will not work efficiently while asleep. It is beneficial for patients who need a limited supply of oxygen. In this mechanism very less amount of oxygen gets wasted hence you will easily find some of the most portable designs of oxygen concentrators in this category.
Generally, the amount of oxygen is denoted by number of pulses per minute.
The continuous flow oxygen concentrators are comparatively bigger and need a continuous AC power supply for operation. However, there are some portable continuous oxygen generators that can give you a backup of 30-45 minutes from its in-built battery.
Generally, the continuous flow oxygen concentrators are available in different capacities from 1LPM to 10 LPM whereas the price of the best oxygen concentrator machines ranges from INR 30000 to INR 3.5 Lakhs depending on the capacity and the brand.
Oxygen Purity Analyzer
In order to make sure that your oxygen concentrator is working as desired, it is important that you have the proper equipment to check the efficiency of your oxygen concentrator. Some of the best Oxygen concentrator machines come equipped with an online oxygen purity meter that continuously displays oxygen purity. However, if your selected model doesn’t have the oxygen purity meter on board, then make sure that you buy a separate oxygen purity measuring device to measure the efficiency of your best oxygen concentrator machine at home.
It can be fatal to supply low purity oxygen to the patient with low blood oxygen concentration.
The bigger the oxygen concentrator machine is, the higher will be the oxygen flow with high oxygen concentration. The figure below is provided for your reference on how the oxygen concentration level changes with the increase in the flow of the oxygen.
In the figure, an oxygen concentrator machine of 7 Litre capacity can generate oxygen of 93% concentration at the flow rate of 1 LPM while as we increase the flow rate the concentration percentage starts decreasing with just 30% oxygen concentration at a maximum flow rate of 7 LPM.
In general, a user with less than 85% blood oxygen level needs more than 5LPM of oxygen level at 93% and the oxygen requirement rises even up to 40-50 LPM depending on the criticality of the blood oxygen level.
Considering the size of the best oxygen concentrator machine while buying plays an important role as portability is an important factor to consider. Always look for a portable oxygen concentrator machine with an hour of battery backup. This will be beneficial during an emergency of shifting the patient. Most of the oxygen concentrator brands nowadays come with up to 45 min-1 hour of battery backup. Some of the best oxygen concentrators can also run on the 12-volt supply of the car through a lighter interface.
As you understand that how much important is the portability of the best oxygen concentrator is. The weight also plays an important role in the portability of the best oxygen concentrator machine. But remember, that the lighter the weight and portability of your best oxygen concentration machine, the lower will be the oxygen flow rate. So, you need to find the balance between the two while choosing your best oxygen concentrator machine in India.
Currently in India, most of the old brands are providing 1-3 years of warranty on their best oxygen concentrator machines. However, due to the increased gap between supply and demand, there are many new local brands coming up in the market which are selling imported Chinese oxygen concentrators without any warranty or people are complaining about no after-sales service being provided by such brands. SO be vigilant on any such brands available in the market.
FAA-approved equipment is allowed to be carried with you during travel by air. If you think that you need any such certification then you can also look for FAA certification in your best portable oxygen concentrator machine. However, it might not be compulsory for all of you.
FAQs: A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India
To much of anything can be harmful. Using oxygen concentrators without proper medical subscription over prolonged period might result in oxygen toxicity which is due to excess oxygen inside the body.
Yes, breathing 100% oxygen for long duration of time or with the doctor’s consultation may result into changes in the lungs which can be quite harmful
Both the devices have their own pros and cons. Like if you are opting for oxygen cylinders then you need to refill them after regular intervals depending on the usage. If using oxygen cylinder continuously then 10 Kg oxygen cylinder might last for 4-5 hours after which you need to look for refill it. But the main advantage is that you can control the flow of the oxygen as per your need that might go up to 40LPM in critical cases.
On the contrary, oxygen concentrators can produce oxygen continuously without any need for a refill. All you need is a continuous electricity supply. However, most of the oxygen concentrator machines can achieve a maximum flow rate of 10 LPM with reduced oxygen concentration which might not be helpful for critical patients who have a low blood oxygen percentage of less than 85.
The oxygen concentrator’s price ranges between INR 30000 to INR 200000 depending on the capacity, the brand of the oxygen concentrator machine.
So, at last, we came to the end of our article “A Guide to the Best Oxygen Concentrator Machines in India”. After going through the article, we assume that you will get most of the answers to your queries arising in your mind during this time of the global pandemic. However, some of the people out there in the market are trying to make some monetary value out of the situation but we believe that proper knowledge about the oxygen concentration machines will going to help you make the right decision during the time of need.
We urge you to only go with the good and old brands like Philips, BPL, etc when it comes to the best oxygen concentration machines in the market. Stay vigilant and don’t get prey to the low-quality oxygen concentrators which don’t even guarantee the supply of desired oxygen concertation.
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