Pulse Oximetry – Near Infrared Spectroscopy
I recently received an e-mail from Owlet Baby Care saying that they were introducing a pulse oximeter for the infant market. The device will be incorporated into a specially designed sock worn by the baby. Pulse oximetry is a non-invasive method for monitoring a patient’s oxygen (O2) saturation. Pulse Oximeters typically also record or display the pulse rate.
Owlet’s infant oximeter uses Vishay’s VBP104s PIN photodiode which has a spectral bandwidth from 430 nm to 1100 nm. Typically a pulse oximeter utilizes a pair of light-emitting diodes facing a photodiode through a translucent part of the patient’s body, usually a fingertip or an earlobe. One LED is red with a wavelength of 660 nm, and the other is infrared with a wavelength of 940 nm. Absorption at these wavelengths differs significantly between oxyhemoglobin, the red line in the image below, and its deoxygenated form; therefore, the oxy- to deoxyhemoglobin ratio can be calculated from the ratios of the absorption of the red and infrared light. This can be used to determine if the infant is breathing normally or effectively.
In infant pulse meters the emitters and detector are placed in the part wrapping the foot and are ‘facing’ each other in a transmissive sensing mode. The light is transmitted through the foot.
Ensuring the health of newborns is a noble cause and we hope this product succeeds.
Check out all of Vishay’s Photo Detectors at http://www.vishay.com/photo-detectors/ .
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