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City Technology has developed a nitric-oxide (NO) sensor specifically for medical applications.

The sensor is claimed to provide good sensitivity, repeatability, stability and speed of response.

The NO sensor will supplement existing City products monitoring patients in intensive care and premature babies in neonatal units who are receiving inhaled NO therapy to assist with breathing difficulties.

It will also be deployed in instruments measuring NO in the breath of patients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, where the sensor’s performance with differing breath conditions obviates the need for large and expensive sample conditioning.

The sensor will allow the manufacturers of breath monitoring equipment to develop smaller instruments, making their devices more widely available; for example, they could be installed in doctors’ surgeries where they will enable patients to be given sophisticated tests without requiring them to attend hospital as an outpatient or inpatient.

The design of the sensor, which does not require the sample of exhaled breath to be adjusted to a particular temperature and pressure to achieve a reliable reading, will enable lower-cost instruments to be developed, allowing their use to be extended into an increased number of more mainstream establishments.

The device itself requires 10 seconds of exposure to achieve a reliable reading of the NO content of the exhaled breath.

It resolves down to 10 parts per billion.

The design of the sensor provides stability in the presence of transient humidity changes, further reducing the complexity required of the instrument; it has a 10-30C operating range and is packaged in the company’s industry-standard compact 7 Series encapsulation.

It is rated for more than 2,000 exposures and operates on a catalytic, non-consumable principle.

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