Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Ropar have developed a first-of-its-kind device that can regulate the flow of medical oxygen from cylinder during inhalation and exhalation by a patient, thereby reducing wastage. "The device supplies a required volume of oxygen to a patient during inhalation and trips when the patient exhales, thereby saving the flow of oxygen at that time," the institute said in a statement on Tuesday.
AMLEX is a system developed specifically for oxygen cylinders. It synchronises the flow of oxygen with inhalation and exhalation of a patient. This conserves a large amount of oxygen in the reservoir, said Dr Ashish Sahani, Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, IIT Ropar. "As we have seen the demand of medical oxygen has jumped manifold during the second wave of COVID-19, the device would help in stopping the unwanted wastage, said the statement.
The device can operate on both portable power supply (battery) as well as line supply (220V-50Hz), said IIT Ropar Director Rajeev Ahuja. The device can be easily connected between the oxygen supply line and the mask worn by a patient. It uses a sensor which senses and successfully detects inhalation and exhalation of the user in any environmental condition, said Sahani.
So far, during exhalation, oxygen in the cylinder/pipe is pushed out along with the exhaled carbon dioxide. "This leads to wastage of a large volume of oxygen in long run. In addition to this, a large volume of oxygen escapes from the openings of the mask to the environment in the resting period (between inhalation and exhalation) due to continuous flow of life saving gas in the mask, according to the statement.