How to view the oxygen concentrator industry

08 Apr 2022

Oxygen concentrators are gradually entering people's lives. Oxygen concentrators are suitable for medical institutions and home oxygen therapy and health care according to the size of oxygen flow. It is used in people's daily life and hospital treatment, which plays an important role. Oxygen concentrators have great development prospects and development advantages. Oxygen Concentrators can be divided into integrated oxygen concentrators and split oxygen concentrators according to the product structure. As a tool for home health care and oxygen therapy, household oxygen concentrators have become a necessity for the elderly. Oxygen concentration is one of the important parameters for oxygen concentrator products to prove the final index of product performance.

Interpretation of the Industry Standard of Household Oxygen Concentrator

In 1985, Praxair Company in the United States developed the first small oxygen concentrator, which marked the beginning of the miniaturization of molecular sieve technology, and made oxygen concentrators enter ordinary families. In 2009, the State Food and Drug Administration issued YY 0732-2009 "Safety Requirements for “Medical Oxygen Concentrators” Industry Standard. However, the standard for household oxygen concentrators used by ordinary users is still blank, which also leads to the uncontrolled quality of household oxygen concentrator products on the market, which seriously affects the healthy development of the industry and the general public. Legitimate rights and interests of consumers.

The technical management of the Technical Committee for Standardization of Household Appliances has changed the status quo of only medical oxygen concentrator standards solved the problem that there is no industry standard for household oxygen concentrators on the market, and provided miniaturized non-medical oxygen concentrators into ordinary consumer households with technical basis. The industry standard of QB/T 5368-2019 "Household Oxygen Concentrators" has made technical requirements for the main oxygen production technologies of household oxygen concentrators currently on the market, respectively, for pressure swing adsorption oxygen production technology and membrane separation oxygen production technology.

Pressure swing adsorption oxygen production can also be called molecular sieve oxygen production. The produced oxygen concentration is high and is the mainstream product on the market; membrane separation oxygen production is to separate and produce oxygen from the air by membrane separation method, and the produced oxygen concentration is higher than Low. Pressure swing adsorption oxygen concentrator, this type of product can be used in the field of home health care oxygen therapy, the main performance can reach the medical level, and the oxygen production is efficient. Membrane separation oxygen concentrator, this type of product can be used outdoors, the advantages are easy to move, small size, low price, but the oxygen concentration is low, suitable for health care oxygen.

Classification of oxygen concentrators

Household oxygen concentrators classified by product structure can be divided into integrated oxygen concentrators and split oxygen concentrators. All-in-one oxygen concentrator,they are often portable or portable, plug-in and play, and the specifications are mostly 1 L to 10 L. Split oxygen concentrator is composed of two parts: the main engine and the oxygen supply end. The appearance is similar to the split air conditioner, and it is often fixedly installed. This type of product is mostly used for large units, villas, commercial or plateau collective oxygen supply. Specifications are usually above 10 L.

The main technical indicators of the oxygen concentrator

The oxygen concentrator should be able to operate normally under the following environmental conditions: Ambient temperature: indoor unit: 5℃~40℃; outdoor unit: -10℃~50℃; relative humidity: indoor unit: ≤80%; outdoor unit: ≤90 %; Atmospheric pressure: 86 kPa~106 kPa; ≤86 kPa is an oxygen concentrator for plateau use, which should meet relevant additional requirements.

The rated flow deviation range of the household oxygen concentrator is ±10% or ±0.2 L/min, whichever is greater. The flow rate of the oxygen concentrator for plateau will change with the change of altitude. For the specific value, flow deviation is a common error characteristic of many gas equipment, and the flow deviation range of the QB/T 5369-2019 standard is consistent with the medical standard. At the same time, the error interval caused by the change of the plateau pressure is increased.

Oxygen Concentration of Oxygen Concentrator

Oxygen concentration is one of the important parameters for oxygen concentrator products to prove the final index of product performance. The QB/T 5368-2019 standard stipulates that under the rated flow rate, the oxygen concentration of the oxygen concentrator based on the pressure swing adsorption principle should not be less than 90%, and the oxygen concentration of the oxygen concentrator based on the membrane separation principle should not be less than 30%. Compared with the standard oxygen concentration of medical oxygen concentrators ≥90%, the QB/T 5369-2019 standard also covers the membrane separation oxygen concentrator products that appear in household products according to the process characteristics.

The QB/T 5368-2019 standard focuses on the core technical indicators of household oxygen concentrators, including key technical requirements such as oxygen concentration, oxygen cleanliness, and noise. Among them, the oxygen concentration is the core parameter of the oxygen concentrator, and it is also a parameter that consumers must pay special attention to when purchasing. The standard requires that the oxygen concentration of the pressure swing adsorption oxygen concentrator should not be less than 90%. The main consideration is to be able to effectively solve the problem. Hypoxia is a pain point for users, and the need to achieve small-scale diffuse oxygen supply.

Oxygen Concentration Alarm for Oxygen Concentrator

Whether it is a pressure swing adsorption oxygen concentrator or a membrane separation oxygen concentrator, it will be used for a period of time.In order to ensure the user's use effect, QB/T5368-2019 requires that the oxygen concentrator should have an alarm warning in the following situations: when the oxygen concentration based on the principle of pressure swing adsorption is lower than 70%~ 74%; when the oxygen concentration based on the principle of membrane separation is lower than 25% to 27%.

The setting of the above indicators not only refers to the requirements of mature medical oxygen concentrator standards, but also considers the needs of domestic use. The requirements for oxygen concentration of membrane separation oxygen concentrators are mainly to meet the oxygen-enriched conditions.

Oxygen Concentrator Noise and Timer

The sound power level noise of the oxygen concentrator based on the membrane separation principle should not be greater than 50 dB (A-weighted). The sound power level noise of the oxygen concentrator based on the principle of pressure swing adsorption should meet the requirements. The establishment of the data is based on a large amount of measured data by the drafting working group, combined with the results of product production process control and verification, in line with the scope requirements of daily household products.

The oxygen concentrator may need to be turned on for a long time when in use, and the home environment is relatively closed. If the noise of the oxygen concentrator is too high, the human body will be in a noisy environment for a long time, and the user will feel irritable, but will not achieve the effect of health care.

The noise of oxygen concentrators using membrane separation technology is usually smaller than that of pressure swing adsorption, and consumers can choose corresponding products according to their own needs. The household oxygen concentrator needs to be equipped with a timer. The timer should be able to accumulate the use time of the oxygen concentrator in hours (h) or minutes (min). The timer is equipped to provide users with better user experience and maintenance tips.

High and low temperature storage of oxygen concentrator

High temperature storage: put the oxygen concentrator in a test box that is consistent with room temperature without electricity, so that the test,the temperature of the box was gradually raised to (55±3) °C and kept for 1 h. Take it out and store it at standard atmospheric pressure for at least 1 h, let it return to room temperature, and then run it at the rated voltage.

Low temperature storage: Put the oxygen concentrator in a test box that is consistent with room temperature without electricity, and gradually reduce the temperature of the test box to (-40±2) °C for 4 hours. Take it out and store it at standard atmospheric pressure for at least 1 h, let it return to room temperature, and then run it at the rated voltage. After the test according to the above conditions, the oxygen concentrator should be able to start and operate normally, the product structure should not be deformed or cracked, and the oxygen concentration should meet the requirements.

Forecast of the development prospect of oxygen concentrator

With the acceleration of the aging process around the world, household oxygen concentrators have become a necessity for the elderly as a tool for home health care and oxygen therapy. In the next few decades, oxygen concentrators will enter every household as a consumer product, and oxygen concentrators will also face new development trends in their own development.

Statistical analysis shows that domestic oxygen concentrators will be dominated by membrane separation and pressure swing adsorption, and pressure swing adsorption will occupy the mainstream. Due to the integrated application of the product, it is expected that the home oxygen concentrator will make progress in the following aspects in the future.

(1) Functional diversity: In addition to meeting the performance specified in the standard, functions such as remote control, timing, ozone disinfection, music playback, headset type and diffuse oxygen absorption will also be considered.

(2) Miniature portability: Due to its large size and weight, household oxygen concentrators are not easy to carry. For the elderly who travel and walk, there are still shortcomings. Miniaturization and portable design will be the focus of product development. one.

(3) High degree of integration: The household oxygen concentrator currently adopts the component assembly mode. The gas path causes a certain resistance to the oxygen production process, which increases the weight and volume. It is difficult to ensure air tightness between the components, and the failure rate is high. Integrating the air circuit and modular design is the future trend of mass production. The complex and cumbersome structural design is grooved like a circuit board, which is both beautiful and practical.

(4) People-friendly price: The simplification and optimization of the production process, on the premise of not lowering the quality, removes the high-cost medical specification requirements of the industry, which will greatly reduce the production cost and thus the product market price.

The development direction of oxygen concentrator

From the perspective of the domestic oxygen concentrator industry, product technology and product standards, this paper analyzes the technical status of household oxygen concentrator products, the scientificity and rationality of standard requirements and technical indicators, and predicts the development direction of household oxygen concentrators , provides useful guidance for the industry engaged in the design, development and inspection of oxygen concentrator products, and provides professional interpretation for oxygen concentrator consumers from the product type, application technology and standard requirements.

The release of the industry standard of QB/T 5368- 2019 "Household Oxygen Concentrator" unifies the evaluation methods of household oxygen concentrators, so that the main technical indicators of household oxygen concentrators have a scientific and objective basis for evaluation, which makes up for the market's There are no unified technical requirements and test methods for such product s, which is conducive to standardizing industry and market behavior, improving product quality, and promoting industry quality upgrades, providing technical support. The implementation of this standard provides a testing basis for household oxygen concentrators sold on the market, escorts the production of enterprises and consumer purchases, and provides technical support for future market supervision.

Keywords: oxygen concentrator

Originally published 08 Apr 2022, updated 08 Apr 2022.

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