All you need to know about Oxygen Cylinders

What is an oxygen cylinder?

Types of oxygen cylinders

How does an oxygen cylinder work?

Type of Tank

Height (in inches)

Capacity (in litres at 2,200 PSI)

ML-6 (Transported with carrier bag)


165 litres

B (or M-6) (Transported with carrier bag)


164 litres

C (or M-9) (Transported with carrier bag)


255 litres

D (or M-15) (Transported with carrier bag)


425 litres

E (or M-24) (Transported with a cart or wheelchair bag)


680 litres

M-60 (Not portable)


1738 litres

When should you use an oxygen cylinder?

What is the difference between an oxygen cylinder and an oxygen concentrator?

Like an oxygen cylinder, oxygen concentrators are also used to provide supplemental oxygen to patients. But they are different in a number of ways:

Oxygen Cylinders

Oxygen Concentrator

How it works

Stores a fixed amount of pressurized oxygen, which is gradually used until the tank empties

Filters oxygen from the surrounding air

How the oxygen is delivered

Using a nasal tube or a mask

Using a nasal tube or a mask

Refill or replacement

Need to be replaced or refilled once the tank is empty

Do not need to be replaced or refilled


Portable versions are available

They are portable

Since oxygen cylinders need to be refilled, smaller portable models (such as the M-6 or M-9) may be used in conjunction with an oxygen concentrator. The concentrator can then be used to refill the cylinder using a "home-fill" system.

How are oxygen cylinders helpful in fighting COVID-19?

What are the steps for using an oxygen cylinder?

Are there any risks in using an oxygen cylinder?

What to keep in mind before getting an oxygen cylinder?