Electronic Nose Sniffs out Bacteria

Posted 6 Nov 2002 at 20:00 UTC by steve Share This

UPI carried a story today on a new electronic nose that is sensitive enough to smell bacteria that cause pneumonia. It can diagnose patients by sampling the air they exhale and passing it over a polymer grid containing 32 carbon-black sensing elements. The array of sensors produces unique patterns or fingerprints of odors which can be identified algorithmically. The sensor, called "cyranose", is a handheld device made by Cyrano Sciences. The company also make "nose-chips" for those wishing to embed the sensing technology in other devices. Dr. C. William Hanson, III, who conducted a recent study with the device said the speed of diagnosis could save lives.

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