Industry White Paper

Critical Components for Critical Medical Devices: DC Fans Deliver Design Flexibility in Portable Oxygen Concentrators

July 01, 2020 by Orion Fans Download PDF


Individuals with lower blood oxygen concentration often require an oxygen concentrator to make breathing easier. Oxygen therapy is used to normalize the blood oxygen level during sleep, rest, and activity. According to the American Thoracic Society (ATS), more than 1.5 million adults in the United States use supplemental oxygen to combat a variety of respiratory disorders.

For most users, oxygen concentrators help improve their quality of life and increase their lifespan. Early-model oxygen concentrators, however, were heavy and bulky, tethering patients to home or hospital, greatly impacting their ability to work, travel, or socialize. Newer models have incorporated more advanced (and smaller) components, so today’s portable oxygen concentrators (POCs) are smaller, lighter, and quieter than previous versions. They are easily transported and increase mobility for users, but their smaller footprints inherently increase the device’s heat density, increasing thermal load.

Orion Fans has been designing, developing and manufacturing AC fans, DC fans, EC fans, fan trays, fan accessories, motorized impellers and blowers since 1979 to meet the continuing thermal management needs of OEMs worldwide. High-performance fans are required to cool temperature-sensitive components and efficiently remove waste heat.

In this white paper, explore how these fans must combine a compact design with high airflow and low noise operation to meet modern POC design objectives.

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