LUCKNOW: At at time when the gap between the demand and supply of oxygen is continuously widening, the makeshift hospitals to be set up by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in Lucknow are likely to have their own oxygen supply with the help of a technology used in light combat aircraft TEJAS fighter jets.

This is the first time that the self-sustainable oxygen generation technology for fighter pilots will be used in makeshift hospitals in Uttar Pradesh.

Defence minister and Lucknow MP Rajnath Singh sent a team of DRDO officials to the state capital on Friday to start the process for setting up of hospitals at Haj House and Golden Blossoms resort. The hospitals, likely to get ready by next week, will have around 250-300 beds each and will be run by the doctors, nurses and support staff of Armed Forces Medical Services.

According to defence ministry sources, DRDO has developed a medical oxygen plant as a spin off technology of the ‘On Board Oxygen Generation System’ (OBOGS) of TEJAS.

On condition of anonymity, an official told TOI: “This plant can provide medical grade oxygen round-the-clock at a high-flow rate catering to at least 50 ventilator ICU beds. This technology will be used to activate oxygen plants at Covid hospitals.”

The technology, which has been developed by DRDO’s Defence Electromedical & Bio-Engineering Laboratory (DEBEL), breaks down molecular components of the atmospheric air to provide continuous oxygen to pilot within the aircraft for long duration and high altitude flights.

Once set up, the technology will help in continuous supply of oxygen to critical beds for Covid patients, refilling of oxygen cylinders and eradicating logistical problems related to cylinder transportation from one point to another, apart from sharing the burden of oxygen demand and supply.