Stick On This Temporary Tattoo To Find Out How Drunk You Are

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By Cooking Panda

It’s not the prettiest tattoo, but you could say what it lacks in looks is made up for in purpose. It’s a potential life saver.

It’s a temporary, wearable patch, developed by engineers at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), that tests your sweat for blood-alcohol concentration, according to Munchies.

Attached to the patch is an electronic board that sends the sweaty data to mobile phones via Bluetooth within 15 minutes.

You won’t have to chug a beer and run a lap to perspire enough for the tat’, either; the patch releases a sweat-inducing drug called pilocarpine, which allows the device to measure “sensible sweat,” or sweat seen on the skin.

This kind of sweat, the engineers explained, gives a more accurate, real-time blood-alcohol concentration than “insensible sweat,” which happens before it appears on the skin and can be two hours behind the correct blood-alcohol reading.

While other wearable technologies can detect blood-alcohol concentration, UCSD’s is reportedly the first to measure sensible sweat.

The best part? It works. The team tested the tattoos by attaching them to nine volunteers and reading their blood-alcohol concentration before and after they had a beer or glass of wine, according to their findings published in the ACS Sensors journal on July 12.

Movement, as well as bending and shaking the patch, didn’t impact the volunteers’ results. The device may indicate that you’re too drunk to function, but it won’t stop your dance party. 

The technology developers’ main hope for the device is that it keeps drunk people from driving.

“Lots of accidents on the road are caused by drunk driving,” said UCSD nanoengineering professor Joseph Wang, who worked on the project, reports the UC San Diego News Center. “This technology provides an accurate, convenient, and quick way to monitor alcohol consumption to help prevent people from driving while intoxicated.”

The tattoos could also be used by doctors and police officers as a more accurate and non-invasive way to calculate blood-alcohol concentration.

Measuring how drunk someone is usually requires pricking a finger, and breathalyzers can give faulty numbers. Someone’s breath right after having a drink, for example, would suggest a blood-alcohol content higher than it really is. Those who live above the law might also know that gurgling mouthwash can trick breathalyzers into detecting a lower alcohol level.

The engineering team is now working on a device that will continuously measure alcohol levels for 24-hour periods.

Away with that bulky breathalyzer. It’s time to get tatted.

Sources: UC San Diego News Center, MunchiesACS Sensors / Photo credits: UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering/FlickrACS Sensors

Tags: BAC, blood alcohol, science, Tattoo, Technology
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