The terms oxygen container, and oxygen concentrators (also known as oxygen generators), are often confused with each other. How these oxygen system devices are built, their scope of work and their delivery mechanisms will help us to better understand the differences.
In this post, we at Agastyaoxtech want to point out differences between the two though the popular understanding amongst the masses is that both are the same. Both these devices or equipment are indeed designed to supply additional oxygen to those who require oxygen usage for medical purposes but that is where the similarity ends.
12 Reasons Why Concentrators are Better than Oxygen Tanks
Here are 12 reasons why medical oxygen generators/concentrators are better than oxygen cylinders/tanks/containers.
Unlimited Amount of Oxygen
The biggest difference between an oxygen container or oxygen tank and an oxygen concentrator (or oxygen generator) is the method by which the oxygen (O2) is acquired and then dispensed. An oxygen concentrator will filter the surrounding air to create medical-grade oxygen providing an unlimited amount of oxygen output for the oxygen patients as long as it is required.
Efficient PSA Method
Oxygen concentrators have an efficient Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) method. Concentrators differ significantly from standard oxygen storage tanks because they do not save oxygen. It is normal for the compressed oxygen and fluid oxygen to be stored at a 99.5% purity degree level. The atmospheric air is composed of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, and the rest is 1% of other gases. An oxygen concentrator adsorbs the ambient air removes nitrogen to retain and maintain concentrated oxygen, and the oxygen delivery is then done through a nozzle to the desired hospital rooms or beds. Ther below image showcases how the medical oxygen concentrator PSA process works.
Oxygen Flow Rate
Another major difference between the two is the oxygen dosage to the oxygen patients. Oxygen tanks tend to provide continuous circulation, whereas an oxygen concentrator can manage the oxygen flow rate through pulse dosage shipment, though this can vary based on the type of oxygen concentrator used.
Hospitals and health clinics use oxygen stored in cylinders as a routine. Such oxygen used from cylinders is unsafe as it may carry rust and dirt particles from the cylinders. The iron cylinders are prone to rust and are unsafe. In contrast, an oxygen generator makes use of the bordering air and creates purified oxygen as needed; There is very little risk of leakage and this minimizes by a large degree the threat of catching fire thereby offering you safety and regulatory advantages. Oxygen tanks and oxygen cylinders are however prone to fire hazards due to the movement and shuffling of the cylinders. There is also reduced manpower in handling the high-pressure oxygen cylinders thus reducing overall risks for the hospital and its healthcare workers and patients.
Endless Supply of Oxygen
We need to mention that one of the biggest benefits of the site oxygen concentrator system is that having an uninterrupted power supply and maintaining the concentrator in a good working condition will ensure that the oxygen patients will have an endless quantity of pure oxygen.
No Heavy Cylinders to Handle
Oxygen storage tanks can only have a restricted quantity of medical oxygen, and once the oxygen in the tank has reduced, then the oxygen supply has to be replenished or you need to change the oxygen tank and get a newer filled storage tank. However, in the case of oxygen concentrators, there is no storage of high pressure, combustive gas and no heavy cylinders to handle.
Oxygen cylinders are costly to procure and maintain. Unused cylinders can go waste after ordering and the logistics of managing oxygen cylinders is a nightmare. It is also to be noted that from a technical perspective, that an oxygen concentrator does not depend on pressurized oxygen. This means that they do not require a thick metal storage tank thereby making them lighter and less costly and improves the portability should it be so required to move them. Most users return oxygen cylinders empty after 80% consumption and the remaining 20% (360 – 400 PSI or 1132 – 1250 L) is returned which could be saved.
Variety of Choices
From a point of choice options, an oxygen generator can offer a wide variety of choices including portable ones but oxygen storage tanks are mostly just the same. These varied options enable the oxygen company which manufactures the concentrators to guarantee that the hospital or healthcare customer gets specifically what they order and require within weeks of the order.
Portable Options Also Available
Concentrators are also available in several sizes and styles, with larger versions of the oxygen device being used at a hospital, old age homes or the residence of the oxygen patient. Portable versions are also available for traveling during medical emergencies and for climbing in oxygen deficit high altitude regions.
No Dependency on Supply Chain
One of the biggest reasons that hospitals prefer to install a site oxygen concentrator is the equipment’s capability to work with surrounding air which is freely available and thus you can be sure to never run out of oxygen unlike oxygen tanks, where you may be at the vagaries of a strong supply and logistics chain. There is no risk of failure in the supply chain when it comes to oxygen generators.
Preferred Choice of Hospitals
The inherent advantage of oxygen concentrators is that they don’t actually have a set oxygen output capacity, so if the hospitals need uninterrupted and continuous oxygen flow, a concentrator will certainly be the preferred choice besides being more economical over the life of the oxygen concentrator. The health care workers in the hospital also don’t have to bother with having to call for oxygen refills and new tanks often. The medical facilities also gain complete autonomy.
Reduced Operating Costs
No doubt adding a site oxygen concentrator can involve higher one-time investment. However, over time, the oxygen concentrator plant will be economically viable. So, although oxygen cylinders or tanks have a lower initial expense, the fact that they need to be replenished or changed frequently, means that the cost of maintaining them accumulates over time making them a costlier proposition in the long term.
Here is a cost comparison between a liquid oxygen (LOx) plant and a PSA oxygen plant. All values are given in Indian Rupees (INR).
LOX Plant Running Cost for One Year
Cost of LOX @ 600 M3 per day per month @Rs.20 per M3
Monthly Rental for the LOX Tank and accessories P.M
Total Cost for one year
600 x 20 x 30 =
Add rental if any
PSA Plant Running Cost for One Year
Units Consumed in a day
Average Electricity Cost @ Rs. 6 Per Unit for one year.
Consumables @ 6000 P.M for 1 year, which includes 2000/4000 Hrs. cycle maintenance of compressor & mandatory filter element replacement
Total expenses in one Year
32 x 24 = 768
768 x 8 x 365 = 22,42,560.00
Return on Investment (ROI) Cost of Cylinders for One Year
Cost of Cylinder
Cost Per Month @ 20 cylinders per day for 30 days
Total Cost for one year
300 x 20 x 30
Model OA/200 Plant Running Cost for One Year
Units Consumed in a day
Average Electricity Cost @ Rs. 12 Per Unit for one year.
Consumables @ 4000 P.M for 1 year, which include 2000/4000 Hrs. cycle maintenance of compressor & mandatory filter element replacement
Total expenses in one year
11 x 20 =220
220 x 8 x 365 =6,42,400.00
Use Quality Oxygen PSA Generators
Depending on the oxygen flow rate that is suggested and the quantity of time that the storage tank will certainly be needed, specific onsite oxygen generator models may be far better than others.
We recommend that you check the specifications from the oxygen concentrator manufacturer before you go ahead with the purchase and installation. When it involves the life of human beings, the quality of the product and oxygen source should be foremost in your evaluation.
Usually, oxygen equipment companies like Agastyaoxtech that maintain the oxygen concentrator provide 24/7 online monitoring by their maintenance staff and will also travel to the site of the installation to troubleshoot and fix the problems within hours of the call.
Agastyaoxtech supplies PSA oxygen on tap directly to the patient with the proper flow rate. Call +91 83225 13921 and talk to our experts. We are a leading manufacturer of medical oxygen generator systems in India. Our team will help you select the right oxygen concentrator for your hospital or medical care facility.