Updated on February 20, 2024


Created on August 27, 2015

Arktek Passive Vaccine Storage Device

Upcoming Update

The Arktek Passive Vaccine Storage Device is a vaccine storage device that can store up to 5 L of vaccines for over 35 days without the need of an external power supply.

Tested By
  • PATH
Content Partners


Product Description

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.

Target SDGs

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/Building Method

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)

35 +

Number of Shelves


Power Requirements


Vaccine storage capacity (Liters)


Design Specifications

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.

Product Schematics

Technical Support

Technical support is provided by the manufacturer or its designated service agents. A maintenance manual is also provided.

Replacement Components

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.

Evaluation methods

World Health Organization’s (WHO) parameters for safe vaccine delivery

Other Information

Received a Patents for Humanity Award in 2016.

Comments from the Community

1 Comment

  1. E4C.COMMENTS says:

    Steve Harston says:

    I believe that more of these categories should be able to be filled out if the product is “being readied for field evaluation” as stated under the tab “Manufacturing & Delivery”. While the final details may not yet be known, if they are doing a field study they should have at least have preliminary numbers on “Gross Storage Capacity”, “Holdover Time”, and “Vaccine Storage Capacity”. As the product is finalized, the numbers presented here can be modified to reflect these changes. Specifically with “Holdover Time”, even if they haven’t done detailed testing, it would be very beneficial to provide results from their preliminary testing but they should also comment that the results are preliminary.

    From my perspective the information provided under “Power Requirements” is not addressing the question that is being asked. They don’t state if it is intended to be plugged in most of the time, power consumption How is this intended to be used? Temporary no power? Solar driven? Information on the solar panel size could also help users better understand the power requirements of their product.

    I interpret the “Safety” category differently than the owners of this product did. I don’t know which is correct but I interpret it as what are the hazards of using the device. For example, if caustic Phase Change Material is used in their ice packs or if high voltage is required to run their system than these should be called out here.

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