The COVID-19 pandemic has presented the world with a stark reminder of the importance of medical preparedness. It is in this spirit that significant investments are being made in the medical devices field—not only to address our current predicament, but also to prepare for the next one.
This momentum is already reflected in the latest medical power supply unit (PSU) growth forecasts. During the period from 2020 to 2027, the power supply segment is expected to increase at a CAGR of 6.5 percent. A confluence of factors will contribute to this growth, including the pandemic, which could continue to drive up demand for medical devices even after it is brought under control as healthcare systems attempt to shore up their lines in case of future health emergencies.
But beyond COVID-19’s unexpected effects on the market, there are a number of predictable factors playing out as well. Our rapidly aging population will necessitate greater medical investments to treat the increased healthcare needs of a geriatric population. And this phenomenon isn’t limited to the United States; a number of developed countries are beginning to deal with growing shares of elderly populations, including Japan, Italy, Germany, and Portugal, among many others. Even China, whose population currently still has a relatively young average age, is actually aging faster than any country in the world, necessitating great medical infrastructure. Finally, technological innovation, new treatments, and patient care developments have simply been steadily increasing the number of devices in medical settings that rely on PSUs for energy.
N2Power has extensive experience fulfilling the unique power needs of medical devices. We take a holistic approach to delivering power supplies, making sure that they are not only cost effective, but also backed by the very best quality and service. To understand what makes N2Power’s medical power supplies stand out from the sea of competitors churning out cheap products, we need to dive a little deeper.
Power Supply Safety Features
Because of the nature of medical devices and the close contact human patients and operators routinely have with them, safety is a primary concern for medical PSUs. Afterall, medical devices should have to abide by the Hippocratic oath too, don’t you think? All of our medical power supplies are equipped with a number of safety features, including MOPPx2 rating. So what is a MOPP, anyway? The acronym stands for means of patient protection, and it refers to the level of protection an electrical device offers to patients.
MOPPx2 is the highest level of protection and requires two independent means of isolation from electric shock, creating redundancy in case one protective measure fails. The designation also includes requirements for clearance (the shortest distance through the air between two conductive parts) and creepage (the shortest distance along the surface of the insulating material between two conductive parts) as well as electrical isolation rated for up to 4,000 VAC. These high standards ensure patients remain safe while attached to the devices and are of vital importance as more electronic devices are introduced into the medical environment.
N2Power offers a full range of standard products, but what really makes us unique in the PSU field is in the breadth and variety of value-added features that can be included with an order. Rather than separately purchasing all of the accessories and other equipment necessary to implement a power supply into your unique application. Everything from connector cables to brackets to mounting appliances—even down to, literally, the nuts and bolts—can be included with an order, making integration into your application simple. For instance, all of our power supplies can be paired with a variety of chassis options, including open frame, DIN rail, U-channel, hot-swap, enclosed, and custom mounts.
We’re able to offer all of these value-added features thanks to our competencies in not just electrical but also mechanical design. We call this ability our Optimized Power Systems Manufacturing program. After discussing your needs with one of our engineers, we can develop a complete assembly for your PSU, as well as customize certain electrical features of the unit, such as output voltage. Taking advantage of the OPSM makes purchasing simple by reducing the power supply, assembly, and accessories to a single BOM line entry.
Integrating a power supply into a medical device isn’t as simple as just choosing a model with the right specs. Because of their sensitive nature, medical devices must adhere to a number of manufacturing standards to ensure their reliability and safety. Chief among these certifications is IEC 60601-1, an international manufacturing standard that governs electrical medical devices. As an international standard, IEC 60601-1 is often replicated by domestic standards. In the United States, it is UL 60601-1, while in the European Union, the standard is EN 60601-1. But no matter what it’s called, it’s a unified standard that will fulfill the requirements of its corresponding regional versions around the world. And that’s a good thing, since most markets require medical devices and all of their componentry meet the IEC 60601-1 standard in order to be sold. The standard is in place to protect operators and patients from potential dangers, including electrical, mechanical, radiation, and fire hazards.
Since its founding, N2Power has focused on producing high efficiency, green power supplies. In fact, we were producing units with efficiencies beyond 90 percent well before power supply efficiency regulations first went into effect in 2006. This efficiency provides the obvious benefit of reducing power consumption, thereby reducing energy costs and an organization’s carbon footprint, but other advantages spring from it as well. Because greater efficiency means less energy dissipation in the form of heat waste, reducing or eliminating the need for fan cooling. This further reduces energy costs and eliminates a fail point, making the device even more reliable and saving on replacement costs.
Our commitment to efficiency also manifests in increased power density—the amount of power a unit produces divided by its volume. This means we can provide PSUs that make the best use of space possible without sacrificing output, letting us meet customers’ power requirements even within tight design constraints.
N2Power’s Medical Series PSUs
As mentioned previously, N2Power offers a full range of standard medical power supplies that range in output from 40 W all the way up to 500 W. Still, we are committed to expanding our catalogue even further. We recently released new convection cooled 40 W and 65 W models (you can read more about the ML40 and ML65 here) to complement our 100 W models. We are also preparing to release larger units extending to 750 W, so keep watching this space for more information about these new models!
More Power to You
If you have a medical application in need of a power solution, we would love to hear from you. Our team is available to identify your specific PSU requirements and work with you to develop the ideal components for your device. Start your journey now by reaching out to us through our contact page!