#GOODBIODESIGN: Olfactory bio-sensor.
BioScensor is an olfactory sensor that analyses the odours in the environment via a cultivated mucosa, converts them into digital information and makes them available to the user. Mould, cancer, air quality, people suffering from strokes, individuals in the surrounding area and smoke or gas development can be reliably detected.
BioScensor is the most advanced design in the series. The design implies that it is possible to design viable organisms from the drawing board and make them operable with digital interfaces. The result is a prime example of a cyborg that – due to its visual reduction to a simple membrane – can nevertheless find acceptance. The new possible uses of such a product are particularly attractive: the olfactory sense represents an area that has so far been poorly researched technologically.
The size of the mucosa inside the BioScensor is more than 10 cm² and corresponds to the nasal mucosa of a full-grown dog. Fragrances can dock to the millions of cross-linked olfactory receptors and thereby give a specific impulse to the nerve centre of the BioScensor. The chemical impulses in the mucosa are converted into electrical impulses and can be read out from the main board of the sensor.
The mucous membrane is the product of in vitro tissue breeding: the organism has thus grown outside of a living being by using programmed cells and represents a newly developed being from scratch. In the process, a reduction to minimal life-supporting functions took place. If the nutrient supply, which has to be done by hand, does not arrive through nutrient batteries, the organism dies off. From the original organism (in this case the dog), only the elements necessary for the product have been taken over by biotechnological procedures.
The nervous system of the organism has been purified and is limited only to the self-preservation measures of the mucous membrane and the correct recognition of olfactory impressions. Functions such as pain, digestion or memory processes are largely stopped. A continuous flow of air and the humid environment inside the unit ensures perfect detection and processing of the fragrances and prevents the odour cells from drying out.
The electrical pulses are electronically evaluated inside the BioScensor and then transmitted wirelessly to the user‘s devices. The latter is informed about hazards and receives a report on the air quality of his location. The list of possible usage scenarios is long and, in conjunction with the digital input devices and newly developed applications, allows access to an environment that was previously invisible to humans.
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