New Sensor Monitors Blood Alcohol
Hoping to reduce unsafe drinking, the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) of the NIH funded development of a wearable sensor that detects alcohol levels and sends the information to the person’s cell phone. The purpose of the device is to help the individual monitor his/her alcohol intake.
The small sensor, which is worn like a patch on the skin, works by a process called iontophoresis. One component of the device stimulates the skin beneath the patch to produce sweat. Another component measures alcohol levels through changes in the electrical current of the sweat and sends the information to the person’s phone.
The device is discreet and convenient. According to researchers, it can be worn on an area of skin that doesn’t show, and takes just 8 minutes to send the information. The goal is to help prevent alcohol-related dangers, such as binge drinking and impaired driving.
Image Credit: American Chemical Society