When a customer begins purchasing x-ray equipment, there's a lot of different things that need to be done to the room to make it x-ray ready. We provide customers with an equipment room drawing, which is essentially architectural plans which outlines where the equipment needs to be, where the electrical needs to be installed, where internet needs to be installed, as well as the orientation of the room.
The operator wall
The type of equipment you will use will depend on the details of the drawing. For example, in a chiropractic x-ray room, we would only draw a wall and a tube stand where the generator goes, as well as where the operator wall is.
The operator wall is where the operator of the x-ray equipment, a radiology tech or the doctor themselves, stand behind to take the x-ray. It is a requirement to be able to physically see the patient while you're taking x-rays. The operator wall typically will have lead inside it, and that lead can either be roll lead, sheets of lead, or even panels of lead. There will also be a window which is usually a minimum size of 12x12” but can be larger depending on the budget the customer has and how large they want the window to be
In the equipment room drawing we show where the operator wall should be, how large it should be, as well as what’s behind the operator wall. For example, behind the operator wall is often where the computer, the monitor, and a shelf with the control panel for the x-ray generator will be. All of this is detailed in the equipment room drawing.
Electrical requirements are also detailed in the equipment room drawing. In most cases, the generators that we supply to customers will require incoming power of at least one hundred amps. If customers don't have that incoming power, we can provide them with a stored energy generator that works on batteries instead.
The incoming power needs to go to a disconnect switch and from there it will go into the x-ray generator. Based on the electoral requirements of the customer and the generator, it could either be a single phase or it could be three phases. Again, that will be all outlined and detailed within the equipment room drawing.
Role of the physicist
The equipment room drawing is also very helpful to supply to the physicist. When we supply the drawing to them, they will provide us with feedback on the amount of lead and where that lead is required in the walls, and sometimes the ceiling and the floor as well.
When doing the equipment room drawing, we also detail and explain what is on the exterior walls or what is on the other side of the x-ray room. It might be a hallway, it might be a parking lot, or even interior walls like a patient room or procedure room. These are really important elements to include when we're doing the equipment room drawing.
We try to minimize the amount of lead that's required. If we know that we're shooting with the tube pointed in the direction of the exterior wall, in some cases that might mean it is not required for that wall to be leaded. If the composition is made up of concrete, or it is in an area that can be positioned to minimize the lead required, we'll try to orientate the equipment room drawing to be able to do that.
The equipment room drawing is a great starting point. Once the customer chooses the equipment that they want, creating the equipment room drawing is the first thing to do so that we can make sure that all parties are aware of exactly how the room is going to be laid out. Everyone from the physicists, the construction team, the cleaning contractor, the electrician, and the installer will know the orientation of the room and where everything needs to go to make sure that it's a smooth and a successful project.
If you want to get your x-ray room ready and need help completing an equipment room drawing, get in touch with us today.