A new proof-of-concept from IBM Research could give field scientists access to a digital sommelier’s palate, even when they’re taste testing wastewater for hazardous contaminants. Dubbed the Hypertaste, this prototype device will allow researchers to perform sophisticated liquid chemical analysis across a variety of compounds and without the need for complex lab equipment. Electrochemical sensors (the fancy name for electronic tongues) tend to be either lightweight and portable but only calibrated to detect a single chemical or huge(ly expensive) stationary pieces of machinery capable of detecting a wide array of component compounds. The Hypertaste however operates in the space between them.
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