Indian Navy’s innovation: Provides ‘Oxygen on Wheels’ and designs O2 recycling system

By: |
May 26, 2021 4:41 PM

A team of specialists from the Naval Dockyard Visakhapatnam has helped connect the Oxygen pipeline in the COVID Health Care Centre at Palasa.

Oxygen on Wheels, Covid Centre Care, Naval Dockyard Visakhapatnam, Oxygen Pipeline, COVID Health Care Centre at Palasa, Oxygen round thee clock'Oxygen Recycling System' (ORS) to alleviate the existing Oxygen (O2) shortages has been specially designed and conceptualised by the Diving School of the Southern Naval Command.

The Indian Navy has provided an ‘Oxygen on Wheels’ plant which has been designed by the Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam, to the COVID Care Centre, Palasa.

More about the Oxygen on Wheels

‘Oxygen on Wheels’ is a unique initiative and has been launched by the Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam. A PSA Oxygen Plant was integrated on a mobile platform. This has been done to help serve remote hospitals. This was launched formally at Visakhapatnam by Vice Adm AB Singh, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command.

A team of specialists from the Naval Dockyard Visakhapatnam has helped connect the Oxygen pipeline in the COVID Health Care Centre at Palasa.

This will provide oxygen round the clock, and 12 patients in the hospital can use this at one time. The Naval team has also trained the hospital staff in operating the plant.

Based on the request by the civil administration, the Naval Dockyard designed this system. It was formally inaugurated at the Palasa, Covid Care Centre by Sreediri Appalaraju, minister of Animal Husbandry & Dairy Development & Fisheries on May 25, 2021.

Indian Navy makes an Oxygen Recycling system (ORS)

‘Oxygen Recycling System’ (ORS) to alleviate the existing Oxygen (O2) shortages has been specially designed and conceptualised by the Diving School of the Southern Naval Command.

Why the Diving School?

It has been designed by Lt Commander Mayank Sharma of Diving School, and patented. The Indian Navy earlier this month has applied for the patent.

According to the Indian Navy, the Diving School has the expertise in this it is based on the basic concept which is used in some of the diving sets which are used by the school.

As reported earlier, a similar idea on a miniaturised lab model was demonstrated to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, earlier this month during the Combined Commanders Conference at Kevadia.

More about the ORS

This system will help in extending the life of the existing medical O2 cylinders two to four times.

How does it do that?

By using only a small percentage of O2 inhaled by a patient is actually absorbed by the lungs, and the rest is exhaled along with carbon-dioxide (CO2) produced by the body. This exhaled O2, according to the Indian Navy can be reused, provided the exhaled CO2 is removed. And this is possible by using the ORS which adds a second pipe to the patient’s existing O2 mask. This second pipe then sucks out the air exhaled by a patient by using a low-pressure motor and non-return valves.

The exhaled gases, CO2 carbon dioxide and O2, are then fed into a Bacterial Viral Filter and Heat and Moisture Exchanger Filter (BVF-HME filter), this is done to absorb any viral contaminants. After this, the gases pass through a high-grade CO2 scrubber with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter, which absorbs CO2 and other particulates. This allows the enriched O2 to pass through unaffected, which then is pumped back into the inhalation pipe of the patient’s face mask. This helps in reducing the use of O2 from the cylinder.

The team of specialists at Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST) at Thiruvananthapuram found both the design and the concept feasible. Earlier this month, an ‘Initial Evaluation Certificate’ was accorded by the Director, SCTIMST.

This system is going in for clinical trials and the design will be available free for mass production. The overall cost of the ORS prototype has been capped at Rs 10,000/- and is expected to help save Rs 3,000 per day due to the recycling of O2.

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