Progress made toward at-home diagnosis tech: researchers – CTV News

Scientists are one step closer to gadgets that might be able to answer an age-old question, and one that has become more important than ever since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic: do I have a cold, the flu, or something else entirely?
Smart technology that could help diagnose you at home may be within reach in a few years, according to a team of Norwegian scientists who say they’ve hit an important landmark.
As described in a paper published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Nature, the team has created the “first high-quality microresonators” able to access the longwave infrared spectrum of light for better detection and imaging.
“We’ve built the lowest loss whispering gallery mode microresonator out there for the longwave infrared spectrum,” Dingding Ren, a researcher at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology’s (NTNU) Department of Electronic Systems, said in a press release. “Because the longwave infrared spectrum provides definitive information about chemicals, it provides new possibility for sensing applications.”
This development means researchers are able to utilize longer wavelengths of light, potentially opening up new possibilities for this technology, such as gadgets that could speedily identify minute differences in illnesses when presented with a sample.
Considering that the symptoms for viruses such as influenza, the common cold and COVID-19 can be similar or overlapping, being able to one day quickly diagnose yourself using a small household gadget could be groundbreaking. The release noted that researchers believe this technology could one day be utilized to detect diabetes as well.
Microresonators are a type of optical cavity that can store a significant amount of optical information inside a small container. Within the microresonator, light travels in circles, amplifying its properties.
“We can compare the microresonator to what happens with the sound in the whispering gallery in St. Paul’s Cathedral in London,” Ren explained.
In St. Paul’s Cathedral, if a person standing at one end of the room is whispering, a person standing at the other end can still hear them, even though it normally shouldn’t be possible to hear a whisper at that distance. What is happening is that the cathedral amplifies the sound waves through the precision of its shape and its walls in relation to each other. In a microresonator, a similar thing is happening to the light waves.
There are a plethora of uses for optical microcavities — for instance, they assist in long-distance transmission of data through optical fibres and are key in laser-reading or writing of CDs and DVDs.
Astrid Aksnes, a professor with NTNU’s Department of Electronic Systems, said in the release that being able to measure in the longwave IR range of the light spectrum, encompassing 8-14 micrometres, means more avenues for use in environmental monitoring and biomedicine.
“Many molecules have fundamental vibrational bands in the mid-wave IR range (2-20 micrometres), the so-called ‘molecular fingerprint region.’ By measuring in this wave range, we achieve higher sensitivity,” she said.
“Our microresonator is about 100 times better than what was available before for the longwave infrared spectrum,” Ren said.
“It can retain the light 100 times longer than previous versions, which amplifies the optical field inside and makes nonlinear processes much easier, such as frequency comb generation.”
Optical frequency combs were first developed for atomic clocks, keeping them exactly precise through careful transmission of information. Now frequency combs are found in your GPS and in fibre optic equipment used in computers and telephones.
Apart from improving the ease of frequency comb generation, this new microresonator may be useful for spectroscopic chemical identification — utilizing light to analyzing a sample to check for viruses and bacteria.
“The technology is still in its initial stage when it comes to measurements in this the longwave infrared spectrum of light. But our improvement gives us the possibility to identify several different chemicals in real time in the near future,” Ren said.
Researchers achieved this more high-quality microresonator using native germanium, a chemical element commonly used in transistors, or semiconductor devices, in numerous electronics.
One of the benefits of using germanium is that it’s not particularly expensive, meaning that this technology could help to make spectroscopic machines more accessible. Currently, technology that uses spectroscopy to identify chemicals is only found in hospitals and other large institutions.
Researchers noted in the paper that to access even longer wavelengths it might be necessary to use materials other than germanium, such as diamond or even a type of salt.
We’re still a ways away from smart technology that uses microresonators to identify our illnesses in our home in moments. But with this new research, it seems progress is being made.
An elderly woman is dead and a suspect is in custody after what police are describing as an 'unprovoked attack' on a downtown Toronto sidewalk Friday morning.

A judge has ordered the Liberal government to help bring home four Canadian men being held in Syrian camps. Federal Court Justice Henry Brown has directed Ottawa to request repatriation of the men as soon as reasonably possible and provide them with passports or emergency travel documents.

Canada has overhauled its alcohol consumption guidance, and the difference between the new and old recommendations is stark. Here is a summary of what we know about the new guidelines.

Police believe that two heavily armed men were planning for a shootout with police after they entered a bank in Saanich, B.C., in June and demanded cash.

A Lethbridge baby is in hospital, in critical condition, while her parents are behind bars, accused of her horrific abuse.

A former Afghan lawmaker who was killed in her home on Sunday had been trying to leave the country, her friend tells CTV News.

Scientists have discovered a new emperor penguin colony in Antarctica using satellite mapping technology from the sky.

As the first pandemic-response guidelines of the year were released in Canada, public health officials warned its 'too early' to relax COVID-19 measures, noting the spread of the subvariant known as XBB.1.5, or Kraken.

The federal government says Canada will guide a peace process aimed at resolving the ongoing crisis in Cameroon where years of fighting and strife have displaced nearly 800,000 people.

Police believe that two heavily armed men were planning for a shootout with police after they entered a bank in Saanich, B.C., in June and demanded cash.

A Lethbridge baby is in hospital, in critical condition, while her parents are behind bars, accused of her horrific abuse.

Ryan Konkin was recently engaged and had plans to start a food truck business with his fiancée. But the St. Catharines resident’s plans for the future were cut short last week following an explosion at the hazardous waste facility where he worked.

An elderly woman is dead and a suspect is in custody after what police are describing as an 'unprovoked attack' on a downtown Toronto sidewalk Friday morning.

A judge has ordered the Liberal government to help bring home four Canadian men being held in Syrian camps. Federal Court Justice Henry Brown has directed Ottawa to request repatriation of the men as soon as reasonably possible and provide them with passports or emergency travel documents.

As the first pandemic-response guidelines of the year were released in Canada, public health officials warned its 'too early' to relax COVID-19 measures, noting the spread of the subvariant known as XBB.1.5, or Kraken.

Five Memphis Police Department officers were fired for excessive use of force, failure to intervene and failure to render aid stemming from an arrest during a traffic stop of a man who later died in a hospital, officials said Friday.

U.K. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was fined by police on Friday for taking off his seat belt to film a social media video in a moving car.

A delegation led by the highest-ranking woman at the United Nations urged the Taliban during a four-day visit to Afghanistan that ended Friday to reverse their crackdown on women and girls. Some Taliban officials were more open to restoring women's rights but others were clearly opposed, a UN spokesman said.

A former Afghan lawmaker who was killed in her home on Sunday had been trying to leave the country, her friend tells CTV News.

Police are investigating a shooting Friday near a Kansas City funeral home that left four people injured, one of them critically.

Education Minister Chris Hipkins is set to become New Zealand's next prime minister after he was the only candidate to enter the contest Saturday to replace Jacinda Ardern.

The impasse over a new federal-provincial health-care deal has broken as both sides hone in on how to get better results from new spending, federal Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos said Friday.

Defence Minister Anita Anand was heading home from a meeting in Germany on Friday after she and her counterparts from the United States and across Europe failed to make much headway on whether to provide battle tanks to Ukraine.

The Green Party's Elizabeth May is keeping her attention on climate action and on internal growth after disappointing results during her brief hiatus as party leader.

Canada has overhauled its alcohol consumption guidance, and the difference between the new and old recommendations is stark. Here is a summary of what we know about the new guidelines.

Returning to school within two days of a concussion can lead to faster recovery in youth and children, according to a new Canadian study.

Nigerian health authorities confirmed an outbreak of diphtheria Friday and reported that 25 people, most of them children, have died so far in one of the worst-hit states in the country's north.

Scientists have discovered a new emperor penguin colony in Antarctica using satellite mapping technology from the sky.

A young Rhode Island girl has finally figured out how to determine if Santa Claus is real — DNA.

Online chatbots capable of crafting academic essays are posing a quandary for Canadian universities struggling to clamp down on cheating while educating students about the limitations of using artificial intelligence.

Tennis is abuzz with tongue-in-cheek talk about a "Netflix curse" during the Australian Open, drawing a line from the streaming service's new docuseries about the sport to the recent rough times for Season 1 protagonists.

After a seesawing movie year where every pronouncement about the future of theatrical movies was plausible at different times — Audiences are back! No they're not! — the film Hollywood will crown its Oscar-winner as the best of 2022 may, ultimately, be neither a streaming title nor a box-office smash.

The defence attorney for a man charged with fatally shooting rapper Young Dolph said Friday he has asked a judge to remove himself from the case based on claims that the judge is not being impartial.

Members of Canada's technology industry say another wave of layoffs the sector saw this week is tipping the power dynamic back in favour of employers.

Statistics Canada says November saw the lowest number of employment insurance beneficiaries on record in 25 years. The federal agency says November marked the lowest number of people receiving EI since comparable data became available in 1997, with the exception of the summer of 2020 when the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit was in place.

Elon Musk took the witness stand Friday to defend a 2018 tweet claiming he had lined up the financing to take Tesla private in a deal that never came close to happening.

An Ontario woman said she was left so speechless after learning she had won a $60-million Lotto Max jackpot, she couldn't even tell her mother the good news during their 30-minute drive home.

Financial success is the top priority for Gen Z when it comes to choosing jobs, according to a new survey by jobs website Indeed.

Dealing with toxic family members is challenging, but registered psychologist Natasha Williams says setting realistic expectations can help relationships survive.

Brazilian soccer player Dani Alves was arrested Friday after being accused of sexually assaulting a woman in Spain and a judge later denied bail for the former Barcelona defender.

A study on the positive impact the Special Olympics has on its athletes has given John Bryden hope that he'll be able to speak with his daughter Carly again. The Ontario Tech University study found that people with intellectual disabilities who participate in Special Olympics Canada programs have a 49 per cent reduction in risk of depression.

Canada's Felix Auger-Aliassime defeated Argentina's Francisco Cerundolo 6-1, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 to move on to the fourth round of the Australian Open.

At least 32 cars have been stolen In Toronto each day so far in 2023, a surprising figure spurring calls for car manufacturers to catch up in a digital arms race with tech-savvy thieves.

The pandemic, supply chain issues and inflation have driven up the cost of owning a new car and experts say prices aren’t expected to return to pre-COVID levels anytime soon.

The fastest Corvette ever made comes out later this year, and it's not powered solely by a howling V8.

CTV News Programs
Local News
© 2022 All rights reserved. Use of this Website assumes acceptance of Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy

source

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.