Lots of folks who work around toxic materials regularly are trained on how to handle anything potentially hazardous. Fraunhofer Research Institution for Modular Solid State Technologies EMFT has developed something that might make work a bit easier for these individuals. It's a sensor glove that can detect and alert employees to harmful substances around them.
Dr. Sabine Trupp, who runs the Fraunhofer EMFT Sensor Materials group spoke about this potentially life-saving product, saying it could "detect gases like carbon monoxide, for example, or hyrdogen sulfider" While that's merely one such use for the glove, Trupp says the "Sensor materials could also be deployed for the quick detection of leaks in gas lines.”
If something hazardous is present in the air, sensor-activated dyes are triggered and the glove turns blue. This could dramatically reduce the number of incidents related to airborne toxins in the workplace.
Another use for the color-changing gloves could involve food expiration dates. According to Fraunhofer:
"In the future, color indicator systems integrated into foils or bottle closures are intended to make the quality status of the packaged foods visible. Because the sell-by date does not represent a guarantee of any kind. Foodstuffs may often spoil prematurely — unnoticed by the consumer — due to a packaging error, or in the warehousing, or due to disruptions in the refrigeration chain. Oil-based and fat-containing products are specifically prone to this, as are meats, fish and ready meals."
You know, that's not a bad idea.