What is the Difference Between Industrial Oxygen vs. Medical Oxygen? 

What is the Difference Between Industrial Oxygen vs. Medical Oxygen?

Oxygen remains in high demand in all its forms and is available in containers, cylinders, and many other formats depending on its purpose. For example, medical oxygen aids with respiratory conditions and complications, while industrial oxygen is used in various industries. It’s not surprising that the oxygen market, which was worth almost $26,150.5 million in 2020, is expected to be valued at $37,293.2 million by 2025.

Here’s what you need to know about the difference between industrial oxygen and medical oxygen.


What is Industrial Oxygen?

Industrial oxygen is commonly used in manufacturing facilities and other industrial settings. Considering how reactive oxygen is, the industrial gas may be used for oxidation and combustion. It is also used to stimulate specific chemical reactions.

Here are some common examples of what industrial oxygen is used for:

  • Oxidation and coal gasification processes
  • Metal and steel cutting, welding and brazing
  • Ferrous and non-ferrous metal production
  • Flame cleaning, hardening, and straightening

The pulp and paper manufacturing industry also uses it as a bleaching chemical.

Industrial oxygen is not safe to be inhaled, unlike medical oxygen which is primarily used to help with breathing problems and respiratory conditions. 


What is Medical Oxygen?

Like its name implies, medical oxygen is used primarily for medical interventions and healthcare purposes. It is typically found in clinics, hospitals, emergency rooms, and other healthcare facilities, and is generated through medical air compressors. 

Medical oxygen may be administered for patients with respiratory conditions and those who need assistance with breathing. It can also be used for life-saving treatments. 

Some of its most common functions are asthma treatment, oxygen therapy, first aid resuscitation, and life support. Medical oxygen also helps stimulate cell growth.

The functionality of medical oxygen is quite flexible. It is normally used for surgery and trauma situations. It is also essential in treating COVID-19, asthma, pneumonia, and other respiratory illnesses.


How are Industrial and Medical Oxygen Different?

The purpose of industrial oxygen is to accelerate and support chemical reactions in manufacturing plants and other types of industrial facilities. They aren’t regulated as strictly as the FDA regulates medical oxygen, so it’s not safe to ingest.

Medical oxygen helps maintain healthy blood oxygen levels for patients with respiratory illnesses and those who are in trauma or emergency situations. It may also be used for life support. This type of gas is often used in life-threatening situations, so the FDA has set strict parameters to ensure medical oxygen isn’t exposed to harmful contaminants.

To wrap it up, both types of oxygen have their unique purposes and should not be interchanged. Otherwise, it could lead to accidents or health complications.


Get Industrial and Medical Oxygen from a Reliable Source

Through nexAir’s KnowHow, we’ll help you understand that it’s not entirely about our instrument-grade gases and custom gas mixture products. Applied industry knowledge is just as impactful, if not more significant, on the success of your business. 

nexAir has a strong Forge Forward culture, wherein we become more than just product suppliers to our clients. We share knowledge and technology to help you take your business to the next level. Contact us today for your oxygen needs, both medical and industrial. 


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