Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Researchers Send Text Via Vodka

Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Researchers Send Text Via Vodka

Article excerpt

After successfully text messaging "O Canada" using evaporated vodka, two York University researchers and their UK-based counterpart say their simple system can be used where conventional wireless technology fails.

"Chemical signals can offer a more efficient way of transmitting data inside tunnels, pipelines, or deep underground structures. For example, the recent massive clog in the London sewer system could have been detected earlier and without all the mess workers had to deal with, sending robots equipped with a molecular communication system, " says Andrew Eckford, in whose lab the experiment was conducted. Eckford is a professor at York University's Lassonde School of Engineering in Toronto, Ontario.

The chemical signal, using the alcohol found in vodka, was sent four meters across the lab with the aid of a tabletop fan. It was then demodulated by a receiver that measured the rate of change in concentration of the alcohol molecules, picking up whether the concentration was increasing or decreasing.

"We believe we have sent the world's first text message to be transmitted entirely with molecular communication, controlling concentration levels of the alcohol molecules, to encode the alphabets with single spray representing bit 1 and no spray representing the bit 0," says York University doctoral candidate Nariman Farsad, who led the experiment. …

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