By Ashoke Raj
New Delhi [India], May 15 (ANI): To meet the demand of oxygen supply in the country amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, India's Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has chartered the National Carrier Air India (AI) to import 'Zeolite' from different countries.
"Government of India is in the process of importing Zeolite from different parts of the world, for use in Pressure Swing Absorption (PSA) plants to boost oxygen supplies in the country. DRDO has been appointed by GOI as a charterer for these consignments. Air India will bring in zeolite for DRDO from different parts of the world," Air India spokesperson told ANI.
According to an expert, Zeolite is a key component in the oxygen production process on a mass scale.
"Zeolite-based oxygen concentrator systems are widely used to produce medical-grade oxygen. The zeolite is used as a molecular sieve to create purified oxygen from air using its ability to trap impurities, in a process involving the adsorption of nitrogen, leaving highly purified oxygen and up to 5 per cent argon," an expert said.
Air India has already flown from Rome with Zeolite and is landing in Bengaluru this evening.
"First of these two flights have taken off from Rome and to land in Bengaluru in the evening. Seven charter flights in all have been scheduled between May 15 to 18," Air India told ANI.
DRDO placed an order with Air India to bring Zeolite from all over the world.
"Air India will be flying in zeolite from Rome in seven flights followed by eight charter flights from Korea to Bangalore, between May 19 to 22. Further, we have uplift from the USA through our existing scheduled flights from EWR between May 20 to 25. Another part of this exercise is from Brussels, Tokyo and again USA, in the following weeks," National Carrier Air India told ANI.
Recently DRDO has set up an oxygen plant in AIIMS and RML hospital which generates 1,000 litres per minute.
Air India has always been playing a pivotal role in India's crusade against Covid right from the first evacuation flights that it operated to Wuhan. From evacuation to transporting medical and essential equipment, vaccines and oxygen concentrators, etc., Air India has been flapping its wings relentlessly at the service of the nation. (ANI)