IIT Hyderabad researchers develop smartphone sensor to detect milk adulteration
Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Hyderabad researchers are developing a Smart Phone-based sensoring system to detect adulteration in milk. As a first step, the IIT Hyderabad team has developed a detector system to measure the acidity of milk through design of an indicator paper that changes color according to the acidity of the milk. They have also developed algorithms that can be incorporated on to a mobile phone to accurately detect the color change.
The study results have been published in the November 2018 issue of Food Analytical Methods journal.
In a statement, the researchers explained that they used a process called electrospinning to produce paper-like material made of nanosized (~10-9 m diameter) fibres of nylon. Loaded with a combination of three dyes, the material changes colour in response to changes in acidity. Initial findings showed that the newly innovated detector system had accuracy of 99 per cent.
“While techniques such as chromatography and spectroscopy can be used to detect adulteration, such techniques generally require expensive setup and are not amenable to miniaturization into low-cost easy-to-use devices. Hence, they do not appeal to the vast majority of milk consumers in the developing world,” Prof Singh talked about the study.