Oxygen FAQ

Up to date, expert answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ) about oxygen supply systems, respiratory care and pulse oximetry written by OCC & collaborators.

What are common power related challenges and workarounds in resource-variable settings?

  1. Power interruptionspower interruptions may be common. Be familiar with the local power situation including the primary source of power (grid, generator, solar etc), how frequent outages occur and for how long, and whether backup power is available 
  2. Incompatible device and power supply – be sure to check the voltage and frequency for your device and power supply. While many electronic devices work over a range of voltages, many do not. Frequency issues can be as destructive as voltage issues. The two main systems are 110v @60Hz and 220-240v @50Hz, but in some areas of South America in particular and few others such as the Philippines, it may be 240v @60Hz. Using the wrong frequency will increase of decrease the current drawn, which can result in the device running hot and reducing its lifespan considerably. Some devices will not be affected but many will be. (E.g. a 110v 60Hz UPS may not charge the internal batteries if supplied 110v 50Hz).
  3. Voltage instability (fluctuation) – Some power supplies may be unstable with voltage varying over a wide enough range to potentially damage equipment, especially electric motors. Use of a voltage stabilizer like the Sollatek AVS 30 can help protect against such fluctuations. Use of an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) with ‘on line double conversion’ can also provide voltage stabilization and protection for sensitive equipment. 
  4. Power reconnection surges – while power outages can be inconvenient, it is often restoration of power that can cause a surge in voltage that can damage equipment. Use of a voltage stabilizer or other protection devices can help protect against such surges by providing a time delay on power reconnection after a power outage.
  5. Under and over voltages.  

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