Quantum Tunnelling Technology: Building safer living spaces with the ‘Electronic Nose’

Quantum Tunnelling Technology: Building safer living spaces with the ‘Electronic Nose’

Rajat Kharbanda, Analyst, CMR SemiTronics Practice

January 11, 2013: Peratech, a leading touch technology material provider, have added one more dimension to their award winning Quantum Tunnelling Technology (QTC) material. This time they have used their QTC material to build next generation ‘Electronic Nose’. This electronic nose is capable of detecting Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) present in the surrounding environment.

Volatile Organic Compounds are nothing but organic chemicals that emit gases. Under prolonged exposure, these compounds can cause health related issues like irritation in the eyes, nose, and throat; headache, loss of coordination, nausea, damage to liver and kidney, leukemia etc.

It is seen that the gases emitted by VOC material are at a higher concentration in indoor environments as these are commonly found in products like paints, building materials and furnishings, printers, correction fluids, carbonless copy paper, craft materials etc. The indoor concentration of VOC gases can be as much as five times higher than their concentration in outdoor environments.

Peratech’s electronic nose behaves as a VOC sensor that changes its resistivity when exposed to gases emitted by VOC materials. This electronic nose uses granular type of QTC material that provides a high surface area for absorption, thereby, enabling it to detect levels of VOC in the region of 10-100 ppm.

The major advantage associated with Peratech’s electronic nose is that the sensor rapidly recovers once the VOC gases go away from the surrounding environment, which is not possible in other sensing technologies. Also on account of QTC technology these devices consume relatively lower power, which makes them far superior than other solutions available in the market.

By installing Peratech’s electronic nose in living spaces, I expect that families and communities across the globe will have the opportunity to live and breathe in a healthier and safer environment in the foreseeable future.