Portable Liquid-Fueled Catalytic Heater for Infusion Fluids

Period of Performance: 09/01/2008 - 08/28/2009

$144K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Giner, Inc.
89 Rumford Avenue Array
Newton, MA 02466
Principal Investigator

Abstract

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Portable Liquid-Fueled Catalytic Heater for Infusion Fluids The overall objective of this project is to develop a lightweight, portable, low-cost device powered by liquid fuel for warming intravenous fluids in-the-field distant from medical infrastructure. Excessive hemorrhage, hypothermia and the accompanying shock are among the emergency conditions that often require timely intravenous infusion of large volumes of warmed infusion fluids such as crystalloid or packed red cells. On-site treatment of trauma victims with warmed, intravenous fluids during the critical first hour after the onset of a medical emergency requires effective portable equipment that is not yet available. The portable intravenous fluid warmer would be used in: remote areas, disasters such as hurricanes or terrorist attacks, developing countries, and field military medicine. The major innovation of this project is development of a reusable, portable heater for infusion fluids that uses a non-flammable liquid fuel to provide heating capacity for the full range of trauma treatment in disaster situations. Existing portable technology, powered by batteries, lacks sufficient energy to heat the high volumetric flow rate infusions (up to 500 milliters/minute) needed in trauma treatment. This Phase I project will demonstrate feasibility of a design for a liquid-fueled catalytic heater for warming 60 units of refrigerated infusion fluids (for treating up to 20 patients) using one 500-mL fuel cartridge. The Phase I project will include development of a controlled method for supplying liquid fuel to a catalytic heater, design of the catalytic heater hardware, and integration of the catalytic heater with a medical cartridge-type heat exchanger, culminating in demonstration of a breadboard system for heating refrigerated infusion solutions. A preliminary design for an advanced prototype system will be developed and analyzed to determine the technical and economic feasibility of the device for commercial applications. In Phase II, the advanced design will be implemented and extensively tested to provide a prototype device leading to a commercial product. Commercial Potential: There is a large need for portable, self-powered medical devices for emergency treatment in disaster situations, such as hurricanes or terrorist attacks, and in remote areas. The military also has a great need for emergency equipment for field medical treatment. The proposed device would have high commercial potential since it would have widespread applicability for emergency treatment and would be low-cost and have a long service life. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: The overall objective of this project is to develop a lightweight, portable, low-cost intravenous fluid warming device powered by liquid fuel for in-the-field medical care more than one hour distant from medical infrastructure. Excessive hemorrhage, hypothermia and the accompanying shock state are among the emergency conditions that often demand timely intravenous infusion of large volumes of warmed infusion fluids such as crystalloid or packed red cells. This portable, intravenous fluid warmer would significantly improve emergency patient care and outcomes in remote areas, disasters such as hurricanes or terrorist attacks, developing countries, and field military medicine.