Friday March 9, 2007 11:58 am
Purdue Scientists Create Portable Tricorder
It won’t be long before you go to a Star Trek convention and your gadgets will be more authentic than those of the Enterprise crew. We located Mr. Spock’s watch in December, and now we have discovered his tricorder. University researchers at Purdue have created the battery-powered substance-detecting miniaturized spectrometer that sprays the object with ionized water.
“The detection is done in an ion trap — an RF device that traps ions, then lets them out on the basis of their masses, enabling you to be exactly sure what compound you are sensing,” says the College of Science’s R. Graham Cooks.
Mass spectrometers weighing 300 lbs. are already in use in airports, but this portable Mini 10, at only 20 lbs., makes it possible to seek out new civilizations if you can afford the $1,200. Props to the late Gene Roddenberry for allowing the name to be utilized when the real one finally came about.
Read More | EE Times
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