Beer-tast­ing ro­bots

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - SCIENCE -

SPAN­ISH re­searchers have cre­ated an elec­tronic “tongue” ca­pa­ble of dis­tin­guish­ing be­tween beer va­ri­eties and their al­co­hol con­tent.

The ar­ti­fi­cial or­gan was ac­cu­rate nearly 82% of the time, said its creators – and could be the first step to­wards de­vel­op­ing ro­bots with a sense of taste.

The taster was made us­ing 21 elec­trodes, each re­spon­sive to dif­fer­ent chem­i­cal com­pounds such as am­mo­nium, sodium, ni­trate or chlo­ride, ac­cord­ing to re­searchers from the Au­ton­o­mous Univer­sity of Barcelona.

Ex­posed to beer, the elec­trode bun­dle yielded chem­i­cal data that could be an­a­lysed for pat­terns with which to iden­tify the dif­fer­ent brews.

It could tell the dif­fer­ence be­tween Sch­warz­bier, lager, dou­ble malt, Pilsen, Al­sa­tian and low-al­co­hol beer – all the types it was “trained” to recog­nise. The “tongue” did not recog­nise drinks for which it had not been pro­grammed.

“Th­ese tools could one day give ro­bots a sense of taste,” said a state­ment on the study pub­lished in the jour­nal Food Chem­istry.

They could also “sup­plant pan­els of tasters in the food in­dus­try to im­prove the qual­ity and re­li­a­bil­ity of prod­ucts for con­sump­tion.” — AFP

an ar­ti­fi­cial tongue that can dis­tin­guish be­tween beer va­ri­eties and their al­co­hol con­tent helps im­prove the qual­ity and re­li­a­bil­ity of prod­ucts for con­sump­tion. — aFP

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