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oxygen machine is a device providing oxygen therapy to a patient

2012-08-08 06:17:01

oxygen machine is a device providing oxygen therapy to a patient at minimally to substantially higher concentrations than available in ambient air. They are used as a safer, less expensive, and more convenient alternative to tanks of compressed oxygen. Common models retail at around $800. Leasing arrangements may be available through various medical-supply companies and/or insurance agencies.Oxygen concentrators operate on the principle of pressure swing adsorption of atmospheric nitrogen onto zeolite materials. At high pressure, nitrogen sticks to the surface of the zeolite. Because the zeolite is extremely porous, it has a very large surface area and can absorb large volumes of gas. At low pressure the nitrogen is released.An oxygen concentrator has two cylinders filled with zeolite pellets. Air is compressed to a few times normal atmospheric pressure (typically 20 psi/138 kPa gauge, or 2.36 atmospheres absolute) and passed through the zeolite bed. The bed adsorbs the nitrogen, leaving nearly-pure oxygen (plus small amounts of argon,  water vapor and other minor atmospheric components) in the output.
Typically they are used as an adjunct to CPAP treatment of severe sleep apnea. There also are other medical uses for oxygen concentrators, including emphysema and other respiratory diseases.Used and refurbished units should be purchased through a reputable dealer. Temperamental units are worthless to the medical community since an individual's health frequently relies on the constant extended operation of the unit. However, such units are valuable to metal and glasswork hobbyists. Because oxygen is a "permanent gas" (cannot be liquefied at any pressure at room temperature), it is expensive to obtain in bottled form. Medical oxygen concentrators or specialized industrial oxygen concentrators can be made to operate small oxyacetylene cutting and welding torches.Military aircraft sometimes use molecular sieve oxygen machine to supply the aircrewmen with oxygen at high altitudes. Otherwise, supplies of liquid oxygen are used.Oxygen machine have also been used by the Armed Forces of the United States in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan as part of the equipment used by medical and surgical units in the field.