It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Actual Tricorder-like device invented at Purdue

page: 1
0

log in

join
share:

posted on Feb, 27 2007 @ 10:48 PM
link   


Scientists Invent Real-life 'Tricorder' For Chemical Analysis

Science Daily — Purdue University researchers have created a handheld sensing system its creators liken to Star Trek's "tricorder" used to analyze the chemical components of alien worlds. But the system could have down-to-earth applications, such as testing foods for dangerous bacterial contaminants including salmonella, which was recently found in a popular brand of peanut butter.

The instrument is a miniature mass spectrometer combined with a technique called desorption electrospray ionization, or DESI. The device and technique were developed by a team of researchers led by R. Graham Cooks, the Henry Bohn Hass Distinguished Professor of Analytical Chemistry in Purdue's College of Science.

"Conventional mass spectrometers analyze samples that are specially prepared and placed in a vacuum chamber," Cooks said. "The key DESI innovation is performing the ionization step in the air or directly on surfaces outside of the mass spectrometer's vacuum chamber."

Unlike conventional mass spectrometers, which are cumbersome laboratory instruments that weigh more than 300 pounds, the new handheld device weighs less than 20 pounds and can be used in the field.

"We like to compare it to the tricorder because it is truly a handheld instrument that yields information about the precise chemical composition of samples in a matter of minutes without harming the samples," Cooks said.

The researchers at Purdue look for compounds that indicate the possible presence of a particular substance, such as coc aine or explosives residues. If these indicators are found, the equipment performs a more in-depth analysis to determine the exact chemical structure.

The research team has used the device to analyze clothes, foods and tablets, and to identify coc aine on $50 bills in less than 1 second.

Two startup companies have been established on the basis of DESI and the portable mass spectrometer: Prosolia Inc. in Indianapolis, has commercialized the DESI source, and Griffin Analytical Technologies LLC, in West Lafayette, Ind., has commercialized miniature ion trap mass spectrometers

Note: This story has been adapted from a news release issued by Purdue University.


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
Yeah, the device is 22 pounds, and rather unwieldy, but it's definitely miniature compared to other mass spectrometers. Also, if the cell phone can be miniaturized, then so can this thing. If Kirk had this thing, he wouldn't have needed to find a stone with which to defend himself.

It's as if millions of Trekkies screamed...err, well, they're still screaming...in delight... It's kinda scary really.

Definitely cool.

For what would you use something like this?

I'd use it to find out what's truly in that Special Sauce.


Actually, I've always been curious about what kind of drugs are in my money.

[edit on 2/27/2007 by supercheetah]

[edit on 2/27/2007 by supercheetah]

[edit on 2/27/2007 by supercheetah]

[edit on 2/27/2007 by supercheetah]

[edit on 2/27/2007 by supercheetah]




posted on Feb, 28 2007 @ 06:39 AM
link   
Can't see how it can pe helpfull. Your MS-spectrum is gonna be a gazillion tops, since you can't purify your starting material..



posted on Feb, 28 2007 @ 08:33 AM
link   
Ya, these "labs on a chip" are really exciting and the progress being made in them right now rivals that of computers(though when you think about it, that makes sense). I can't wait till my University gets one of these to play around with



posted on Feb, 28 2007 @ 10:05 AM
link   
special sauce is thousand island dressing and relish.

your money has coke on it.

i still want a tricorder.



posted on Feb, 28 2007 @ 05:59 PM
link   

Originally posted by The Parallelogram
special sauce is thousand island dressing and relish.

You must have been one of those children frightened by clowns.

your money has coke on it.

i still want a tricorder.

I already know that money has coke on it. That's not new to me. I'm just curious about how much. No, I'm not a junkie or anything, by the way. Just curious.

I too want a tricorder.

As far as usefulness, even if it's not as useful as its gigantic cousins, it might be useful to forensics to help them find the best places to look for evidence when they first get to a crime scene.

It might also come in handy for mass food inspection whenever we have outbreaks of things like E. coli. We could more easily filter out foods that are more likely to lead to the source of contamination.



new topics

top topics
 
0

log in

join