Stories tagged Tokyo Institute of Technology


Nose: Courtesy Wikipedia Images
Nose: Courtesy Wikipedia Images

Have you ever wanted to record a smell?

Well, today is your day. Engineers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology in Japan are constructing an odor recorder. The gadget is able to recreate smells by analyzing an odor then reproducing the specific smell from a host of non-toxic chemicals.

Other companies have tried to produce “aroma generators” but have had limited smell range. Basically, previous gadgets have utilized pre-prepared odors yielding a limited smell range. However, the odor gadget being created by the Tokyo team actually records and later produces a smell. Pambuk Somboon of the Tokyo team stated, “In video, you just need to record shades or red, green and blue. But humans have 347 olfactory sensors, so we need a lot of source chemicals.”

Fifteen chemical-sensing microchips or electric noses are used to detect large smell ranges. Collected odors then create a digital recipe from a smorgasbord of 96 chemicals according to the purpose of each gadget. Reconstruction of the smell occurs when drops of relevant vials are mixed, heated and vaporized.

Results so far have demonstrated success. Researchers have reproduced the smells of oranges, lemons, apples, bananas and melons. Even a differentiation between green apples and red apples has been achieved.

What smells would you want to reproduce?