Technology

Aroma Bit’s Odor Imaging Sensor. Not a Gas Sensor.

Aroma Bit is developing Odor Imaging Sensor - Not conventionally available gas sensors.
Gas sensors may tell you what specific molecule(s) is(are) included (or not included) and its concentration in a given gas sample. However, they provide no information on what the “smell” of it is like. These are two different problems.
Odor Imaging Sensor attempts to solve the latter.
Odor Imaging Sensor tells you the “smell” of given gas samples in a form of visualized pattern.
Our Odor Imaging Sensor employs multiple-elements arrayed sensor system, with each element designed to to have varied characteristics to enable odor imaging.
Currently, various types of device are underdevelopment.

Multi Arrayed QCM type Compact Odor Imaging Sensor

As an example, QCM (Quartz Crystal Microbalance) .
QCM stands for Quartz Crystal Microbalance. QCM is a passive component widely used in electronics, which oscillate at high frequency with very high precision owing to quartz crystal’s piezoelectric effect*
The resonance frequency shift behavior upon absorpotion/desorption of incident odor molecules at the surface of thin-film placed on QCM substrate is analysed to generate odor images.
Aroma Bit employs special structured QCM, realizing compact, highly integratable, surface mountable, multi-arrayed QCM system, which was difficult to achieve with conventional QCM.

Case Study: Distinguishing Coffee drink Aroma by Odor Imaging Pattern Comparison

Let’s take coffee drinks as a case study to elaborate on what do we mean by Odor imaging?
Walking into a cafe, you may notice multiple “aroma” from various coffee drinks in cafe’s ambient air.
Have Aroma Bit’s odor imaging sensor “sniff around” the ambient air, it outputs three different odor imaging patterns , as shown below (In this example, coffee of the day (with no cream and sugar), cafe latte and cafe latte with honey, are detected).

Aroma
Image
Patterns
(Illustrative)
Illustrative
Dripped
Coffee
Illustrative
Cafe Latte
Illustrative
Cafe Latte
with honey

All coffee drinks include coffee. Therefore, the unique odor finger print of coffee can be observed in the odor image pattern for all cases (red region in center). In reality, your nose can distinguish the subtle difference in smell among three drinks. The odor imaging sensor does the similar, but instead, it expresses as a difference in odor imaging pattern as shown above, thereby discriminating the smell of different odor samples.

*Wikipedia
**Patent Filed