The Arktek PSD, a passive storage device, is designed to keep vaccines at appropriate temperatures for a month or more with repeat vaccine retrievals and no need for electricity. It is easily implemented with no need for capitol improvements and has no complex parts to maintain or install. Using a single load of ice blocks for thermal energy storage, the Arktek PSD maintains EPI standard temperatures (0~10°C) for up to 5 liters of vaccines for a minimum 35 days in 43°C day time ambient temperatures. With monthly supplied ice blocks, the Arktek PSD can support vaccination services for a community of approximately 6,000 people. The Arktek PSD is helping to extend vaccination services in remote health posts lacking reliable grid power. This ruggedized vaccine carrier can store up to 300 vaccine doses for over a month. The carrier uses vacuum-insulated technology that allows repeat retrievals and includes a monitor that tracks location using GPS, internal temperature, and the number of retrievals, then transmits this information through USB connection or over SMS messaging.
SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being
Market Suggested Retail Price
Target Users (Target Impact Group)
Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, Public Sector Agencies, NGOs
Distributors / Implementing Organizations
Global Good (collaboration between Intellectual Ventures and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation), AUCMA is moving Arktek into distribution in the communities with the lowest rates of vaccination.
Manufacturing is in progress with AUCMA, a Chinese refrigeration company
Intellectural Property Type
User Provision Model
Distributed to healthcare workers directly through large-scale projects with agencies such as WHO. The product may also be purchased from Via Global Health.
Distributions to Date Status
As of 2017, over 500 devices have been distributed.
Gross storage capacity (L)
Holding Temp (°C)
0-10; +/- 0.2
Holdover Time (days)
Number of Shelves
Vaccine storage capacity (Liters)
Using a single load of ice blocks for thermal energy storage, the Arktek PSD maintains EPI standard temperatures for up to 5 liters of vaccines for a minimum 35 days in 43°C day time ambient temperatures. Contains 8.6 liters of water ice. Arktek’s tested thermal heat leak is an average of 1 Watt per day with a day/night cycle of 43°/25°C. The two ice blocks are first stacked against the inner walls and then the vaccine carrier cups are placed in the middle. The device is equipped with temperature sensors that will alert the user if the temperatures inside reach an unsafe range. The product dimensions are 52.8 x 74.7 cm. The product weight when empty is 22 kg and when full is 39.5 kg. More information can be found in the product manual.
Technical support is provided by the manufacturer or its designated service agents. A maintenance manual is also provided.
The manufacturer, AUCMA, will provide parts in case of any repair needs. Interview with designer, July 2015
The economic analysis of this device considers initial cost, as well as cost over 10 years, the estimated lifetime of the device.
Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters
Stores up to 300 doses Requires no electricity, holds vaccines at safe temperature for for 30 to 60 days, depending on outside temperatures and humidity with repeat vaccine retrievals, transportable, low-maintenance.
Vetted Performance Status
Field testing was performed in Senegal and in Ethiopia in 2014. The testing in Senegal showed that the device meets the WHO temperature standards for vaccine storage with no need for an external power source, internal temperatures were successfully maintained for 35 days in all use cases, the device fit well within the current vaccine logistic systems, and received positive user feedback. The testing in Ethiopia showed that again the device was able to maintain a safe internal temperature range for 35 days in different use cases and it received positive user feedback.
The device is designed to only store vaccines, some parts may be flammable (nylon ropes), keep device away from acid, alkali, and other corrosive substances, only authorized personnel may perform maintenance on the device. For further safety considerations, refer to the user manual.
Complementary Technical Systems
A single-use battery to supply power to the sensors must be installed.
Academic Research and References
Normana Bryan A., et al. A passive cold storage device economic model to evaluate selected immunization location scenarios. Elsevier: Vaccine. [Internet] 2013 [cited 2015 June 2]; (31): 5232-5238.
Intellectual Ventures, “Forward-looking Partner in China“, 2013
AUCMA Global, “ARKTEK Product Manual”, 2015
VIA Global, “ARKTEK Manteinance Manual”, 2015
Compliance with regulations
WHO Pre-Qualified under Devices and Equipment category for PQS (Performance, Quality, and Safety). The device is also certified under ISO 9001. Field trials were conducted in collaboration with the Ministries of Health in Senegal, Nigeria, and Ethiopia.
World Health Organization’s (WHO) parameters for safe vaccine delivery
Received a Patents for Humanity Award in 2016.