Medical Equipment Power Quality Monitoring in Times of COVID-19 & Coronavirus

Medical Equipment Power Quality Monitoring in Times of COVID-19 & Coronavirus

Posted by Machine Sense

Expert Power Quality Monitoring Platform: Propelling the Health Care Sector Forward in Times of COVID-19 and Coronavirus Crisis.

The need for a power analyzer in hospitals cannot be undermined. Against a sizeable digital backdrop and as our world advances into the digital age, our physical structures are undoubtedly becoming increasingly redundant. One overarching example is hospitals. With technological strides and advances, aging hospitals and healthcare facilities are creating a massive loophole in facilities; they can unflinchingly support without expensive electrical retrofits and with existing infrastructure. In the field of healthcare, digital devices that are frequently used by nurses and doctors to monitor patients and effectively care for them are indispensable. Still, they are without a sturdy infrastructure to support the rising electrical demands. Poor power quality in hospitals is an alarming source of concern. It is safe to conclude that power is inefficiently and more often than not dangerously distributed in hospitals.

According to data collected by the U.S Fire Administration,  22% of larger and unconfined fires in hospitals over just three years were caused by electrical malfunctions. Needless to say, healthcare facility power systems are required to operate with the utmost reliability and availability, especially during extraordinary circumstances or distressing times. They are supposed to work and give the same results on successive trials in addition to functioning at any given time efficiently and promptly.

Acute care facilities and hospitals offering their steady services and critical medical care to the community at large must plan for mass casualty incidents. Best practices can be undertaken throughout the power system planning, construction, design, commissioning, and installation process. Further, they can be applied to any ongoing testing, inspection, and maintenance processes in light of the recent global crisis.

A checklist during a crisis

Public health officials right now have two basic approaches to control the COVID-19 outbreak - effective containment and mitigation. Both call for a reliable and sustainable healthcare infrastructure to make it possible to isolate at-risk populations and keep them from spreading the disease to others. Official guidance is regularly being updated as the virus spreads, and all health care systems are responding proactively to increasing demand for their services, which is at or beyond capacity in some places.

However, without a proper and efficient power system in place, hospitals are likely to crack under pressure. Medical diagnostic centers and hospitals are bracing for the worst to come. During such critical times, MRI/CT Scan, XRay, etc., need to operate far above its standard capacity without any failure, which is an impossible feat to achieve with poor power quality.

All healthcare facilities need to prepare now for new and emerging infectious disease threats, and they should be ready to cater to several things.

  • In the context of escalating transmission, they must be adequately equipped and prepared to care for a large number of patients potentially.
  • As part of routine operations, however, it is mandatory now that they care for a limited number of infected patients.
  • It is imperative to change the strategies they may be in place and outline emergency plans for the environment - administrative and communication measures.
  • Have all the resources needed to help prevent the spread of COVID -19 and help people avoid contracting the disease.
  • Define ethical individual work practices that will be required to detect coronavirus.
  • Review all plans and procedures of surge capacity and crisis standards of care.
  • Have an excellent infrastructure to fall back on after having managed the impact on patients, facilities, and staff.

Source of contamination of power quality

Due to the lack of a reliable power quality data logger and analyzer, hospitals are getting exposed to increasingly contaminated electrical power causing extensive damages to MRI, PET-Scan, etc. Hospitals today are conventionally backed by three power sources- transformer power through a distribution company, Captive DG power, and power generated through UPS, which happens to create significant contamination in power lines. Here are some nonlinear loads that are widely believed to be the vital source of polluted power:

  • LED lights
  • Computer
  • Server
  • SMPS based power source
  • VVVF Drives
  • Inverter for Solar Panels

Power analyzers can help

Protection for patients — Disaster recovery needs to get power supply as some units are very critical, like intensive care units and operating theatres.

Reliability and safety — Uninterrupted power is a significant factor when catering to millions of potentially infected patients. You can rely on a power analyzer for a continuous, safe, and reliable supply of power. You will detect in case there is a power break up, system errors, damage in the equipment, etc.

Generated power machines — Electronic machines like heaters, air conditioners, or ventilators can stop working abruptly if there is no efficient power backup. It will not only accentuate the already terrible situation at hand but will lead to overheating, making a lot of medical paraphernalia unusable.

Data loss security prevention — Important data like medical history, reports, etc. will be lost. It will also lead to significant security issues as security alarms, and automatic doors will not work.

No radiology equipment failure — Sudden surge/voltage spike, high THDs in power lines can generate excessive heating inside the equipment. Frequent high voltage fluctuation due to improper single-phase load distribution and asynchronous machine operation from the same power line can be avoided with an effective power analyzer.

How to prevent these issues?

With enriched industry experience and knowledge, we are offering a state of the art power quality analyzer designed in compliance with quality norms by utilizing optimum quality material and leading technology. Expert Platform; MachineSense developed MediPAQ is a new kind of power analyzer for medical equipment safety standards. This cloud-based IoT system can pick up millisecond duration power quality events in detail for power quality diagnosis and offer expert solutions. After a detailed and thorough analysis of power quality, Machinsense power quality meters, offer specialized Harmonic filters, equalizer, etc. as a permanent solution for the continued good health of machines.

Whether you are trying to discover the source of intermittent power problems or checking the performance of motors and generators, Expert Platform providing advanced functionality and energy analysis capabilities will offer the data (there's a data table for downloading pertinent data in three distinct phases) you need to get to the heart of the problem quickly. Our power analyzers are optimized for fast, accurate, and efficient testing of power conversion efficiency, energy consumption, and electrical performance to the latest international standards.

Why Expert Platform?

  • A power quality analyzer like Expert Platform is indispensable to the medical sector. Because of its ability to identify many transient or short term power quality issues facilitated by its event-driven wave/signature capturing characteristics, the former being more efficient in terms of cloud cost.
  • Saves expenses by providing reliable and efficient solutions and prevents MRI machines from dying due to poor power quality like high voltage imbalance and high current THD.
  • Our design ethos is rooted in user-friendliness. Our power analyzer allows users to co-relate event V's power issue during the event and offers custom based visualization capabilities where trigger/event parameters can be easily added. Although IEEE standards are set as the default threshold to decide the event, you can set a custom threshold as well.
  • Besides offering accurate power quality measurements, Expert Platform caters diligently to all your power demands by providing the best results. You can select "Quick Time Range" for data visualization. It also offers precise custom date-time selection provision from "Customize Date Time ranges input."
  • Data download, wave capturing based on the event, and data trend over the selected periods are currently available as Release-1. The next release will include FFT, PSD, IEEE519 specifications compliance on event data.

During such panic-stricken and distressing times,  the hospital power distribution system is likely to be fully loaded. Power quality issues like harmonics, current/voltage imbalance, etc. may damage the critical machines needed to operate 24x7. At MachineSense, we take the power quality fed to the Machines very seriously. As human beings suffer from adulterated food, machines also get damaged if adulterated power is fed to them.  It only gets worse with higher loading. Download our presentation and have a look to understand how your hospitals may suffer from poor power quality during peak load.

At this time of crisis, we will be with you to help in all possible ways. However, please remember, power quality problems can't be solved overnight. It takes at least a week to diagnose and then fix. Therefore, it is wise not to wait until power quality issues start haunting you during a crisis. Instead, invest in a power analyzer today and save yourself the hassle.