Tag: sweat

This Skin Patch Can Power A Radio For 2 Days Using Your Own Sweat

Researchers have created a new skin patch that has powered a radio for two days using only human sweat. The Biofuel Skin Patch uses the sweat to provide its power – meaning it could be used to charge up devices like phones in the near future.

“If you were out for a run, you would be able to power a mobile device,” said Joseph Wang from the University of California, San Diego.

His research team at the university have been working on the technology. The biofuel patch is a few centimeters wide and sticks directly on the skin.

skin patch

It works by using enzymes that act like the metals inside regular batteries, which are then powered up by feeding off the lactic acid found in sweat.

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Pass it on: New Scientist

In The Future, Your Sweat Could Power Your Gadgets

Sweat is often an annoyance, or even an embarrassment. We spend tons on antiperspirants, fans, air conditioners, ice cream, and anything else that will keep our body temperatures down to keep sweating at bay.

With a new wearable innovation that turns sweat into energy, that all might change.

From tattoos that can monitor health conditions to golf shirts that measure their wearer’s swings, wearable technology is one of the fastest-growing tech advancements of the 21st century.

Recently, researchers at University of California, San Diego unveiled their own latest wearable: A flexible square patch that can be applied to the skin, where enzymes in the device could feed on human sweat to produce power.

Although it measured just a few centimeters in size, a single square, or biofuel cell, was able to generate enough power to run a radio for an entire two days.

Later versions proved capable of generating up to ten times more energy as their predecessors, meaning that in the future, if you forget to charge your smartphone before a hard workout, no worries!

Just plant your biocell on your skin, and your sweat might make enough juice to let you to stream your gym playlists during an hour of cardio, and for days to come.

A Sweat-Powered Radio is Cool, but That’s Just the Start

Biofuel cells have come a long way over the years. While the possibility of sweat-powered radios and other electronics is pretty fantastic, scientists have much bolder applications for the technology in store for the future.

Those cells could be used as health monitors, checking glucose levels in diabetic patients or to measuring the lactic acid produced in muscles during exercise.

The power generated could fuel a Bluetooth connection that could deliver the information right to a smartphone so that wearers could get real-time reports on their physical health.

The future of wearable biocells has plenty of advantages, but one of the best is that they are non-invasive. This means faster application and less pain.

Eventually, they’ll become less expensive, making them a great alternative to devices like conventional blood glucose monitors that require patients to prick their fingers multiple times per day, or permanent surgical implants like pacemakers.

With the University of California team’s take on wearables, future medical monitors may be self-powering, too.

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Pass it on: Popular Science

Armpit Bacteria Transplants Could Save Us From Our Stink

For the record, Chris Callewaert doesn’t stink.

Though the post-doctoral researcher at the University of California dubs himself Dr. Armpit, and spends his time trying to find a cure for body odor, when I spoke with him at the Biofabricate conference in New York on Thursday, there were no malodorous scents to be whiffed.

But he told me his fascination in the subject was inspired by personal experience.

There are a few factors that contribute to body odor, but Callewaert’s research has found that the types of bacteria that happens to set up camp in your armpit plays a significant role.

Your sweat doesn’t smell on its own, but when it’s broken down by the bacteria that live in and on your skin, it can cause odors.

Using DNA sequences, Callewaert has identified types of bacteria that are more prolific in the armpits of people with low or normal body odor and the types that are more common in people with severe body odor.

A higher population of Staphylococcus epidermidis was associated with neutral pits, while a high concentration of Corynebacterium tended to cause more stench.

In simple terms, the more good bacteria you have, and the less bad bacteria, the better you’ll smell. But how do you get the good bacteria to move in and the bad bacteria to pack its bags? A bacteria transplant, of course.

Callewaert first conducted a successful armpit bacteria transplant back in 2013, with a pair of identical twins.

One twin suffered from more severe body odor than the other, but once Callewaert and his team deposited good bacteria from his brother’s pit, his odor improved, and it stayed improved.

Since then, Callewaert has done 18 additional transplants with similar, though not as long-lasting results.

Though these findings have not yet been published in a peer-reviewed journal, Callewaert told me they will be published in the coming months.

It may seem like a frivolous problem to be solved, but research on armpit bacteria contributes to the growing understanding of the human microbiome—the unique interactive population of bacteria that live on and inside the human body—and how it impacts our health.

And for individuals who have serious body odor, a medical condition called bromhidrosis, it can be a debilitating problem.

Callewaert said he’s heard from patients who lost jobs because of their natural odor, or dropped out of school.

They’ve lost their partners. They’ve lost their confidence. They’ve lost their friends. It really impacts their life,” Callewaert said.

And it’s such a taboo. People just think, ‘why don’t you use deodorant?’ They actually wash themselves more than the average people and change their clothes more often. They’re always anxious and that’s why I want to help.

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Pass it on: Popular Science

Mich Ultra’s Super Bowl Ad Is Heavy On Sweat, Light On Beer

Is it an ad for your local health club … or a beer? Michelob Ultra will continue its fitness-themed campaign in the Super Bowl with a spot that includes a lot more cycling and running than drinking.

The low-calorie brew does not appear until the very end, when all the sweating is over.

The Anheuser-Busch InBev brand seeks to link social drinking and working out via the soundtrack: The theme song from the classic TV show “Cheers.”

The agency is FCB Chicago, which was behind a similar athletic-themed spot for the brand that aired in last year’s Super Bowl called “Breathe.”

This year’s ad is called “Our Bar.” An extended cut (above) will be trimmed to 30 seconds for the in-game airing.

The spot uses “real fitness enthusiasts — not actors — doing what they do day-in and day-out: going through a tough workout together and sharing cold beers afterwards to celebrate,” Ultra stated in a press release.

We recognized that the social lives and beer-drinking occasions of the Michelob Ultra consumer extend beyond gathering at the bar or at home with friends,” Azania Andrews, VP-Michelob Ultra, stated in the press release.

Communities forming around fitness activities represent a new type of socializing. ‘Our Bar’ emphasizes that beer is a part of this new world, grounded in celebrating accomplishments.”

With Friday morning’s release of the ad, AB InBev has now made public all four of its Super Bowl ads, including spots for Budweiser, Bud Light and Busch.

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Pass it on: Popular Science

How Do Dogs Smell Fear?

The portion of the canine’s brain that is used for sorting out smells is up to 40 times the size of that same part of the human brain.

As for fear, being frightened can make humans sweat, an odor that a dog can easily identify.

Then there is adrenaline and associated hormones, which will pump through our bodies when we are are even a little nervous.

Just because we don’t know the “adrenaline scent” ourselves doesn’t mean that a dog won’t recognize it.

However, let me nitpick and say that being able to smell our sweat glands doesn’t mean a dog can literally smell the emotion of fear itself.

Most likely, playing a far bigger role in determining our level of fear is the canine’s outstanding ability to read our body language.

The dog feels our fear and senses we are scared just by watching us.

Dogs are very smart at figuring out our emotions. Anger, feeling threatened or being nervous cannot be hidden from a dog.

In fact, he may pinpoint your fears before you even realize them. People who are afraid of a dog often stare directly at it, probably in hopes of watching his every move.

But the dog may take the stare as a warning that he is going to be confronted, therefore becoming aggressive.

How do dogs smell fear? And can dogs even smell fear at all, in the strictest sense of the phrase?

The answer to these questions may never be known with certainty. But even though you’re an adult now, still choose to follow your parents’ teachings and not show your anxiety when approaching an unknown dog.

Whether your uneasiness can be smelled or sensed, always try to keep my cool.

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Pass it on: New Scientist