Digital lollipop simulates taste through electric currents
Virtual reality device tricks the brain into thinking you are tasting food by simulating the four main taste groups.
A digital lollipop capable of creating different taste sensations through virtual reality has been created by researchers.
The electronic device is placed on the tongue and works by stimulating taste buds with electric currents. An extra trick of varying temperatures is also included to help fool the brain into thinking you are tasting food.
The device is capable of simulating all four of the main taste groups - salt, sweet, sour and bitter.
Nimesha Ranasinghe, the engineer who led the research at the National University of Singapore, believes the technology could one day be implemented in homes to allow viewers to taste the food made on cookery programmes.
“We have found noninvasive electrical and thermal stimulation of the tip of the tongue successfully generates the primary taste sensations," he told New Scientist magazine.
Introducing the device on his online portfolio, Mr Ranasinghe explains: “The system is capable of manipulating the properties of electric currents (magnitude, frequency, and polarity: inverse current) to formulate different stimuli. Currently, we are conducting experiments to analyze regional differences of the human tongue for electrical stimulation.”
Other than for entertainment value, the engineer, who recently completed a PhD, believes that the technology could one day have a medical use.
“People with diabetes might be able to use the taste synthesiser to simulate sweet sensations without harming their actual blood sugar levels. Cancer patients could use it to improve or regenerate a diminished sense of taste during chemotherapy,” he said.
Life & Style blogs
What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
Overly-controlling parents cause their children lifelong psychological damage, says study
What do the emojis on Snapchat mean?
Star Wars BB-8 droid toy is real, should be impossible
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 250,000 back our campaign
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Refugees welcome: More than 250,000 sign Independent petition calling for Britain to 'take its fair share'
- 1 What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
- 2 President Obama leaves touching comment on Humans of New York photo from Iran
- 3 If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
- 4 The Chinese city where men have 'three girlfriends because there are so many women'
- 5 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The IT Support Engineer is needed to ass...
£22000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity to join a p...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Do you get a buzz from thinking up new ideas a...