Sheng-Hsiu Huang1, Chih-Wei Lin1, Wei-Ren Ke1, Yu-Mei Kuo This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.2, Chih-Chieh Chen This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1

1 Institute of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, College of Public Health, National Taiwan University, Taipei 100, Taiwan
2 Department of Occupational Safety and Health, Chung Hwa University of Medical Technology, Tainan 717, Taiwan


Received: May 7, 2020
Revised: September 1, 2020
Accepted: September 4, 2020

 Copyright The Author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Download Citation: ||  

  • Download: PDF

Cite this article:

Huang, S.H.,Lin, C.W., Ke, W.R., Kuo, Y.M., Chen, C.C. (2021). Development of an Orientation-independent Handheld Nebulizer. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 21, 200203.


  • The nebulizer works equally well in any orientation.
  • A unique application of capillary force for solution delivery was developed.
  • The nebulizer is an ideal aerosol delivery device for patients lying on bed.


This work aimed to develop and evaluate a miniaturized handheld vibrating mesh nebulizer (MHVMN) that functions equally well in any orientation. The MHVMN, which comprises a a power supply unit, a vibrating mesh plate, and a liquid reservoir equipped with either a flat end orifice tube (FEOT) or a traditional wick for delivery, was primarily tested using deionized water and a 0.9% sodium chloride solution. Since our study focused on optimizing the dimensions of the FEOT, which utilizes capillary action to deliver the solution, we examined the effects of the operating parameters, viz., the gap between the reservoir wall and the FEOT (LLR-FEOT), the diameter of the FEOT’s orifice (Dorifice), the orientation of the nebulizer, and the size of the aperture, on the performance of the device. The output rate and the residual volume were determined gravimetrically, and both the concentration and the mass distribution of the aerosolized particles were measured with an aerosol size spectrometer (welas digital 3000) and a Micro-Orifice Uniform Deposit Impactor (MOUDI). The results revealed an optimal LLR-FEOT of 0.225 mm, which achieved similar output rates and residual volumes across various orientations. Additionally, a Dorifice exceeding 0.8 mm was necessary to ensure continuous nebulization, thereby yielding a residual volume of less than 4%. Using the FEOT instead of a traditional wick also significantly decreased the residual volume—a major advantage in delivering costly drugs. The consistently high efficiency of the MHVMN regardless of orientation demonstrates its suitability for administering aerosolized medication, especially to patients lying in bed.

Keywords: Vibrating mesh nebulizer, Orientation-independent, Flat end orifice tube

Don't forget to share this article 


Subscribe to our Newsletter 

Aerosol and Air Quality Research has published over 2,000 peer-reviewed articles. Enter your email address to receive latest updates and research articles to your inbox every second week.

Latest coronavirus research from Aerosol and Air Quality Research

2018 Impact Factor: 2.735

5-Year Impact Factor: 2.827

SCImago Journal & Country Rank

Aerosol and Air Quality Research (AAQR) is an independently-run non-profit journal, promotes submissions of high-quality research, and strives to be one of the leading aerosol and air quality open-access journals in the world.