The ultrasound market has been changing over the last decade due to the introduction of powerful, reliable portable systems with performance coming close to, and in some cases surpassing, traditional, console based systems. With these exciting new products come new challenges when it comes to maintenance and service.
The electrical safety testing procedures for console based systems is fairly uniform but portables are more make/model specific. For example, on the GE Vivid series, GE states since the transformer is completely encased in plastic and very low DC voltages are used, no enclosure leakage testing is needed unless the system is integrated into a cart and then the cart is tested to NFPA 99 standards. The GE Logiq series states you should use “accessible metal surfaces” and test to IEC 60601-1 Medical Equipment Safety Standards. On the other hand, Biosound systems and the Philips CX-50 transformer have integrated ground lugs and leakage is tested as you would a console based system. As with all PM and safety procedures, please consult the manufacturer’s service manual and follow their guidelines to ensure conformance.
Repairing these systems has been a challenge due to the high level of integration of components and sub-assemblies within these small enclosers. There is high risk for damage when disassembling and reassembling these units due to the use of fragile soldered and socketed flex cables and confusion caused by many of these cables not being labeled or keyed and unused sockets in the vicinity of used ones. It is critical that you document all cables, connectors and the exact order of disassembly in order to reassemble and avoid major damage to front end and motherboards.
Heat is a common issue with these systems as well. Ensure all cooling grates have clearance and are cleaned thoroughly and that the system is used on a hard surface to ensure adequate airflow beneath the system.
One of the most common problems we see are malfunctions and damage caused by mishandling; ensure all operators are aware of how fragile the displays, hinges, hard drives and user interfaces are to mitigate mishandling issues.
Due to the complexity of these systems and potential risks involved with field repair, Conquest Imaging has introduced a depot repair solution for most portable systems including GE, Sonosite, Philips and more. This exciting new offering is a fast and economical way to repair your portable system properly and return it to service quickly. Please call 866-900-9404 for additional details.
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