Don’t poke that avocado

Published May 12, 2020

Here’s some­thing that just sounds … well, dopey. Testing avo­ca­dos for ripeness involves phys­i­cal­ly press­ing them, which destroys up to 30 per­cent of the crop.

Enter engi­neers at Cranfield University, who — like all good engi­neers — know that lasers make every­thing bet­ter. So they devel­oped a way of using lasers to test avo­ca­dos for ripeness with­out dam­ag­ing them. (Then, just to sound extra-sci­ence‑y, they “test the indi­vid­ual fruits’ res­o­nant fre­quen­cy” and called the process “laser Doppler vibrometry”.)

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