Medical Devices and Healthcare IT

Video: CO2 sensors for safe cold storage of COVID-19 vaccines

08 December 2020

The new Pfizer vaccine developed as a weapon against COVID-19 must be shipped and stored near -80° F for it to maintain its efficacy. To do so requires the pharmaceutical company, shipping partners and recipient facilities to use dry ice to preserve such low temperatures. The process incurs some risk as dry ice, the solid form of carbon dioxide, sublimates at -78° F and generates a gas that can be hazardous to humans in elevated concentrations.

A remote CO2 Storage Safety Dual Alarm from Florida-based CO2Meter is designed to protect people who work Source: CO2MeterSource: CO2Meternear CO2 stored or produced in confined spaces. In preparation for vaccine delivery and storage, a national pharmacy chain contacted CO2Meter to acquire these safety sensors. The chain needed more than 800 safety monitors to be distributed to the first vaccine administration facilities on short notice. CO2Meter provided the chain with monitors that are easy to install and will detect the gas even at very low levels, alerting staff to possible CO2 exposure if the build-up exceeds the OSHA mandated set points for safety.

The CO2 Storage Safety Alarm has both an audible alarm and a flashing visual indicator when CO2 concentrations reach a pre-set level. Two built-in relays can be used to control a ventilation fan and an HVAC control alarm to notify maintenance staff off-site of high gas levels.

To contact the author of this article, email

Powered by CR4, the Engineering Community

Discussion – 0 comments

By posting a comment you confirm that you have read and accept our Posting Rules and Terms of Use.
Engineering Newsletter Signup
Get the Engineering360
Stay up to date on:
Features the top stories, latest news, charts, insights and more on the end-to-end electronics value chain.
Weekly Newsletter
Get news, research, and analysis
on the Electronics industry in your
inbox every week - for FREE
Sign up for our FREE eNewsletter
Find Free Electronics Datasheets