Do the thoughts of installing an X-ray machine seem overwhelming?
The stress often associated with the installation of any machine either big or small can be daunting. The X-ray machine is not exempted from causing this kind of feeling especially since it consists of many parts.
The fear of making mistakes and having to go back many steps to fix an installation error is yet another concern. It can be worse if the installation blunder goes unnoticed making it impossible for the machine to start.
However, at Uni X-ray, we understand this challenge and have put together this guide to save you the hassles and to make your life easier by giving you the right information.
Tips to Get Ready for Your X-ray Machine Installation
The points revealed below are practical tips that you can follow to make sure you prepare adequately for installing your X-ray machine successfully.
• Understand your State’s Radiation Authority
Although every state will demand some form of radiation ordinances that must be in place before any X-ray machine is installed, the details of these state radiation authorities can often differ greatly.
Where some states might require that you provide details like building information for housing the machine, some others might simply just spell out dimensional standards that you must follow.
The bottom-line is that you need to find out your state’s radiation requirements and plan your installation with these in mind so that you don’t fall short on any of the conditions. It generally saves you a lot of headaches going back and forth.
• Check Your State and Local Regulations
Understanding your local and state guidelines for installing special equipment like the X-ray machine is essential and very critical to the successful installation of your X-ray machine.
One way this understanding helps your installation is the ability to reduce the time spent during this period and making sure you don’t break any local building codes.
For instance, the local urban planning authorities might require special permits for your location for radiation-based activities. Being aware of such licenses early will aid your sitting for the X-ray machine.
A lot of time can be wasted and stall your installations if you are unaware of these kinds of directives.
• Check Your Electrical Supply
Electrical requirements are additional key considerations if you must successfully install your X-ray machine. The reason is because electrical specifications are different for various countries.
As an example, the voltage supplied in the UK and in the US are quite different where some countries supply 230V while some supply 120V.
This understanding will enable you to know when to request some form of voltage converting device if your X-ray machine uses a different voltage supply.
Also, your plugs and sockets must be compatible and should be communicated to the supplier if it is not the case for instance, in the case of three-pin plugs and two-pin sockets.
• Review all Plans and Acquire Permits
Building permits from both state and local building authorities are also paramount as they are often a requirement before X-ray machine installation in most countries.
A knowledge of the state and local building code and its requirements will come in handy here. The building code might require that you submit building plans with clear dimensions, structural details, and ventilation system plan for the building to house the X-ray machine. These documents will be reviewed and used to issue the necessary permits for the building.
Other documents that might be required include electrical drawings, health, and safety plans.
• Plan Your Place Layout
A cramped space is not the best for X-ray machine installation. The reason is because the safety of the operator and other support staff around the machine is paramount. Taking note of the size of the machine and other parameters like its length and breadth can help you plan the installation area for adequate space and enough leg room for walking around the machine. Also, ensure that the machine is not against the wall so that there is enough room for carrying out routine maintenance and to allow for the free flow of air around the machine to cool it during operation.
• Manage Your Humidity
Like most machines with electrical and electronic components, the X-ray machine does not fare well in areas with high humidity.
The reason is because humidity eventually forms water droplets when it cools and can cause electronic malfunction if found around the electronic components of the X-ray machine.
High humidity can also be a source of safety concern as they can cause electrocution if the water droplets formed from the high humidity come in contact with an unearthed X-ray machine.
Hence, you must ensure that the X-ray machine is sited in a cool, dry location to avert any unsafe incident.
X-ray Machine Installation Step-by-Step Guide
While adequate prior preparation for the installation of your X-ray machine is good, knowing the right sequential steps for the installation of the X-ray machine is invaluable. You will do well to follow the steps highlighted below to successfully install your X-ray machine.
① Check the Outer Packaging
Most people think of the outer package of a machine including the X-ray machine as a mere container that will be discarded.
Although it is eventually thrown out after some time of unpacking the machine, it nonetheless contains some critical information that will be of help for your successful X-ray machine installation.
General information on a package can include the correct side up, if it is fragile, flammable, or affected adversely by water.
Identify the presence of minor scratches, peeling, and minor marks. Also, take note of major damages including cracks, missing screws, and huge dents.
These observations could indicate a damaged machine and picture evidence should be taken before opening the machine.
However, the picture of both the package and the X-ray machine should be sent to the supplier for a replacement or repair if indeed the machine was damaged upon unpacking it.
② Remove the Toolbox
If there are no damages on the X-ray machine, the next step will be to whip out the toolbox with the right tool necessary for the proper arrangement of other parts and accessories.
Some essential tools that you might require include screw drivers to tighten screws, bars to pry open the package, and some testers to confirm the continuity of electrical cables.
These tools will quickly ensure that you get a good start to your installation work.
③ Start the System and Login
Once you start the system, it automatically asks you to install the software which you’ll use to manipulate the machine. Enter the required password and commence installation of the software.
The installation is a straightforward process as it is based on a windows operating system which is a common operating system for most people.
Once the program is fully installed, then it is time to proceed to the main interface.
④ Enter the Main Interface
The interface allows you to access the control of the machine using the computer system. It has different areas to enhance the control of key features. For instance, there is an area for tube control to enter values for manipulating the tube.
Also, you have the image display and image control areas where the test sample is visible for analysis and where you can input values to control the image quality respectively.
Lastly, the speed setting area allows you to manage the speeds for the X-ray tube and detector.
⑤ Have the X-ray System Calibrated
Calibration ensures that your X-ray machine conforms to acceptable standards of measurement for both quality and quantity measurements.
This procedure is always done during installation and periodically every year or based on the frequency of operations.
You should calibrate parts that perform functions like navigation and image capture as well as platforms that have specified angles of tilts to ensure that they are accurate using acceptable standards.
Other things that require calibration include speed controls, laser distance, tube distance, and detector distance, all of which can be calibrated in the data calibration area.
⑥ Test Your X-ray Machine
The final part of the X-ray machine installation is the testing of the machine to ensure that its operation is normal as described in the user manual by the supplier.
Check all the moving parts to make sure that they move freely without any hiccups. Also, test the X-ray projection efficiency including the image quality produced by the camera.
Ensure that platform is stable and firm, and the angle of tilt is accurate when you require it to move either horizontally or vertically.
Also, ensure that there are no excessive vibrations during operations either due to loose screws or inadequate supports.
Top 5 Most Important Things to do after X-ray Machine Installation
Now that you have installed your X-ray machine, there are still some important steps to ensure that the installation is successful.
☆ Backup all Relevant Parameters
Ensure that you keep key parameters pertaining to your X-ray machine in a backup storage device as it might come in handy for maintenance and repairs in the future.
Also, these parameters might be required by the supplier’s support team for online troubleshooting or when moving it to a new site for re-installation.
☆ Tighten the Screws
Machines like the X-ray machine often have moving parts that agitate the whole machine during operation. The breakup of both stationary and moving parts can occur if screws are not tightened properly. It will be best to employ the right tool in tightening screws to avoid the collapse of the entire X-ray machine.
☆ Communicate often with Your X-ray Machine Provider
Feedback is a necessary step both for you and the manufacturer.
It helps the manufacturer produce better equipment that can meet your needs in the future while it helps you communicate your challenges in using the machine.
Therefore, it will be beneficial to keep the line of communication with the machine manufacturer open for as long as you keep using the X-ray machine.
☆ Read the User Manual to Perform Regular Maintenance
The user manual is a very important document as it contains critical information for the operation, troubleshooting, and maintenance of the X-ray machine.
It is advisable that the operator and any other technical personnel attached to the X-ray machine read and fully understand the user manual. Always communicate grey areas to the supplier’s technical team for clarification.
☆ Set up Training for Your Team on Equipment
Ensure that you organize regular and updated training for your technical team in collaboration with the equipment provider.
These training sessions help to keep your team motivated and updated on the right operation of the machine.
Finally, the operation of the X-ray machine is not possible except you follow the appropriate procedures required for a successful installation.
This successful installation often starts before you receive the package by preparing the ground works, getting the right permits, and meeting both states and local requirements for installing radiation-emitting equipment like the X-ray machine.
Lastly, meeting the post-installation requirements like storing essential machine parameters, and training technical personnel will go a long way to ensure that your X-ray machines operate properly for ages.
Uni X-ray is committed to seeing that you have the right information about X-ray solutions that can make your life easier. What could be better?
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