IoT sensors monitor the temperature of vaccines

Published on 15/01/2021 in Solutions & services

IoT sensors monitor the temperature of vaccines

The Internet of Things (IoT) is playing an increasing role in e-healthcare. In the COVID-19 vaccination campaign, IoT is mainly used for temperature monitoring of the vaccines.

Vaccination with the Pfizer/BioNTech-vaccine has begun. It has to be stored at least -80°C and transported at a temperature of 2 to 8°C. This is made possible thanks to Proximus' IoT sensors that monitor the correct temperature and humidity of vaccines in freezers and cold storage facilities. They prevent errors and avoid vaccines losing their effectiveness. The IoT sensors are very flexible and can adapt to the thresholds of other vaccines. For example, the Moderna vaccine only needs to be stored at -20°C

Proximus’ IoT-sensors

  • The sensors are ready-to-use and watertight.
  • They monitor temperatures down to -55 °C or -90 °C.
  • They work with an accuracy of up to 0.5 °C.
  • They can be installed without major modifications.
  • They automatically send an alarm signal if the temperature deviates from the set values.
  • They are connected to the MyThings management platform via the Long Range (LoRa) network. Backup of the network is done via local gateways.
  • They adapt to the desired temperature of the different vaccines

Management in the MyThings platform.

MyThings is a management platform that companies use to manage their IoT sensors. The tool gives a real-time overview of all the sensors in the network and the status of their connection. Via MyThings, the user sets parameters according to their own needs. For example, the minimum and maximum temperature that must be respected and the frequency with which sensors transmit information.

These three practical examples show what is possible with IoT sensors:

1. Monitoring of cooling and technical rooms

A hospital in Brussels could not monitor the temperature in its cooling and technical rooms. The result: constant problems with temperature and humidity. Proximus installed sensors in more than 100 cooling rooms that monitor temperature and humidity. As soon as the measurements deviate from the parameters, the managers immediately receive a notification or an alarm signal via their alarm system. This lets them intervene quickly. Moreover, the sensors are battery-operated, which makes their installation much easier.

2. Maintaining blood temperature

Until 2019, hospitals could only check the temperature of blood bags when they were received in the hospital. To monitor the temperature also during transport from site to site, Proximus installed sensors in the transport boxes. Every ten minutes, the sensor checks whether the temperature is between the minimum and maximum values. To make monitoring easier, Proximus integrated MyThings into the hospital's ICT system.

Thanks to the smart monitoring of vaccines with IoT sensors, you prevent that vaccines are too hot and no longer usable.

3. Keeping an eye on vaccine temperatures

One of the largest external services for prevention and protection at work transports vaccines for employees. These must be kept cool. The temperature and humidity in the more than 10 refrigerated vehicles and 43 locations are constantly monitored with IoT sensors. There is always a real-time overview of the temperature in all refrigerated vehicles. MyThings was integrated into their alarm system. This way, they can react quickly when a sensor triggers an alarm.

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