Drunkenness and tattoos are usually two things thatshould never be combined. But that cant be said for this new bit of research.
Scientists and engineers from UC San Diego have developed a “temporary tattoo sensor system that is able to give an indication of how much alcohol you have in your body.
The team of nanoengineers recently revealedtheir concept in a studypublished in the American Chemical Society. It works through an electrochemical sensor thatis able to detect alcohol levels viaunnoticeable amounts of sweat present on the skin.
The sensors are located in a thin film thatthe researchers dubbed a temporary tattoo. Its a hydrogel patch thatcontains electrodes and pilocarpine, a drug thatinduces sweating. It also features a flexible circuit board to process this information, which monitors alcohol level within 15 minutes. Using a Bluetooth connection, youll be able to see how much alcohol is in your system via a specially designed smartphone app.
The device is subtle and can even be hidden under clothing. UC San Diego
When youre out at a party or at a bar, this sensor could send alerts to your phone to let you know how much youve been drinking, co-authorJayoung Kim, a materials science and engineering Ph.D. student, said in a statement.
They developed the tattoo so it can still provide accurate readings even after repeated bending and lots of movement, which is probably a wise idea if alcohol is involved. Unlike breathalyzers and blood-alcohol detectors, its also considerably more convenient to use and less invasive.
Lots of accidents on the road are caused by drunk driving. This technology provides an accurate, convenient and quick way to monitor alcohol consumption to help prevent people from driving while intoxicated, addedlead author Joseph Wang, a UC San Diego professor of nanoengineering.
Main image credit: Dave Pitt/Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)