You are probably wondering what is the link between tattoos and alcohol consumption, especially considering that both are fun but appear to be on opposite sides of the same spectrum.
Temporary tattoos are fun, or for some people, they used to be fun. There however seems to be a new and far less jolly version of tattoos that was developed to monitor alcohol levels.
Researchers from the University of California San Diego in 2015 developed a tattoo device for the National Institute of Health’s Wearable Alcohol Biosensor Challenge.
Despite the fact that the device didn’t win top honours, which went to a bracelet similar to a Fitbit, the idea development is being continued, especially since it comes at an inexpensive cost and ease of use.
The big idea behind the tattoo is that it uses multiple technologies to make the process less invasive than blood tests and much more accurate than breathalyzers.
To Monitor your alcohol consumption, the tattoo, which is first screen-printed with silver and silver-chloride electrodes, is placed on the skin. The next thing is that a flexible electronic board attaches to it magnetically.
Once attached, the device is activated, generating a small current that triggers a gel strip on the tattoo that then releases a drug into the skin to induce sweat. The device then reads and processes the alcohol levels.
The results obtained are then sent to the user’s smartphone via Bluetooth.
Results of the study testing the device were published in ACS Sensors. The developers of this new technology however made it known that like all temporary tattoos, the device is disposable and can only be used once.
Furthermore, they also made it known that they are now working on a version that can continuously track alcohol levels for 24 hours. The big question is would you get a tattoo to monitor your alcohol consumption?