Oxygen in the medical field has traditionally been produced centrally and then distributed in liquid form, or as a gas via cylinders, to the customer. An alternative and increasingly popular means of oxygen generation exists in the medical market, however, in the form of pressure swing adsorption (PSA).
Though commercialised in the 1970s, PSA oxygen concentrators for the supply of medical gas distribution systems have grown on the worldwide market in the last 20 years in particular. As the oxygen is produced onsite, without delivery and storage, medical oxygen generators have convinced many hospitals and healthcare facilities in North America, Africa, Middle East, Asia, and in recent years Europe, that they are able to supply medical oxygen at a competitive price compared to liquid oxygen or cylinders.
PSA systems utilise commonly available components that can greatly reduce the initial capital required compared to the cryogenic production of oxygen, for example, and offer the kind of mobility that address the varying requirements of the hospital and healthcare sector; their rise in this area has been facilitated by ‘monographs’ that deem the use of oxygen in the range of 90-96% purity acceptable.
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