In the early 1980’s, there were 12 Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machines in use. Today, there are approximately 25,000 around the globe. One item in common is their use of Helium. Liquid Helium is most often associated with party balloons and funny voices, but 20% of the world supply of this super-cooled gas is used in MRI equipment. Liquid helium is extremely cold (-450°F), which is necessary to cool the magnets and get optimum performance from the $3M piece of equipment.
One problem with using the gas is that it displaces oxygen, and without oxygen, people and animals suffocate. Look no further than the relatively recent death of a young party-goer who inhaled the gas to make her voice squeaky. Her oxygen levels dropped to a deadly rate.
Helium is a nontoxic, odorless, colorless, nonflammable gas stored in cylinders at high pressure. It can cause rapid suffocation when concentrations are sufficient to reduce oxygen levels below 19.5%. It is lighter than air and may collect in high points or along ceilings. Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) may be required by rescue workers.1
If a helium leak occurred in a MRI room, asphyxiation can occur, creating a dangerous environment for both facility workers and patients. For that reason, Oxygen Deficiency monitors are recommended in MRI facilities. PureAire Monitoring Systems Oxygen Monitors are becoming the newest safety product amongst MRI users, thanks to its 10 + year sensor. Unlike its competitors, PureAire’s sensors do not require maintenance or replacement parts and are not impacted by environmental drift. This means no false alarms or failures due to depleted sensors. Further, the “set it and forget it” nature of the solution translates to the lowest cost of ownership in the industry.
The PureAire Oxygen Monitor has been used around the world for the last 14 years. The high reliability, low cost and PureAire’s commitment to customer satisfaction make it a customer favorite.
“Thanks again for your support. The oxygen monitors are in their respective locations and are functioning as designed. Nice unit! Everyone thinks they are a great product. The software menu is easy to use and could not be easier to operate.” - Dominion Nuclear
“The O2 monitors are working well and doing a great job! Alarm relays are configured with the exhaust fan and is triggered a couple of times a day if we have cryogenic bottles in the area. Excellent product, repeatable, and reliable as advertised.” - Gulfstream Aerospace
If you have any questions, we’d love to speak with you. Call us at: 1-888-788-8050
About PureAire Monitoring Systems, Inc.
PureAire is the industry leader in gas monitoring solutions enabling organizations to ensure safe work environments, minimize compliance risk, and reduce associated costs. Over 1,000 organizations across the globe use PureAire gas monitoring solutions. Beginning in 1996, PureAire’s growth has been a result of an unbeatable combination of innovation and experience in solving safety and environmental needs for customers, as well as a total commitment to supporting the customer 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
1) Air Products. (1997). MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET. http://avogadro.chem.iastate.edu/MSDS/helium.pdf