Covid testing, sci-fi style

Published May 7, 2020

How can you make coro­n­avirus test­ing bet­ter? By using lasers, of course. It’s called Raman spec­troscopy” and the idea is to use a laser on a sam­ple … and then it gets even cooler:

Once a sam­ple is col­lect­ed, a spec­trom­e­ter mea­sures the inter­atom­ic vibra­tions that result from shin­ing the light on the col­lect­ed virus­es. Each virus has its own sig­na­ture vibra­tions, which act as a sort of opti­cal fin­ger­print that can dis­tin­guish the coro­n­avirus from, for exam­ple, the virus that caus­es influenza.

It’s an AI that does the fin­ger­print­ing, too.

So you blast a sam­ple with a laser, mea­sure its atom­ic vibra­tions, and have an arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence deter­mine what virus it is. Welcome to the future.

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