Swiss scientists learned to connect food to the Internet of Things

03.10.2017 Swiss scientists learned to connect food to the Internet of Things

A group of developers from Switzerland created a new type of microsensors. Biocompatible and biodegradable devices are created in such a way that they can be put in food, a person that eats such a product will not notice anything different from the usual food and will even get an additional minerals dose. The study results were published in Advanced Functional Materials.

Edible sensors are designed to monitor product quality, ambient temperature, solar exposure and other factors that can affect quality of the products during transportation. In fact, it’s a way of controlling how carefully transport companies abide by transportation norms for certain products.

Smart Food & Geek Garden: Swiss scientists learned to connect food to the Internet of Things - 1

The device itself is made from thin threads of magnesium, nitride and silicon dioxide, and placed in a starch potato and corn polymer. As a result, we get a sensor that is easily digested by the human body and does no harm at the same time, it’s even good for you because it contains magnesium. In addition, the device is easily decomposed in natural conditions. The sensor’s length is no more than a few millimeters, the thickness is 16 microns (which is more than five times thinner than a human hair) and the weight is less than 1 milligram. In a 1% salt solution this sensor completely dissolves in 67 days. In contact with water, the device works for one day.

So far, the prototype needs an external battery to work, but scientists hope to solve this problem in the near future, as well as provide the sensor with additional functions, besides measuring the temperature, it will be able to record pressure, gas concentration and ultraviolet level.

 

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