Electronic Nose, Digital Smell Analysis Sensor Innovation by Thai, …SMEs Helper on Thai Food Production industry.
Funding to Expand Business for Thai Startups, Pushing “Electronic Nose” Innovation to Foreign Markets: Program Management Unit for Competitiveness (PMU “C”) provides support for research funding in the Project on Electronic Nose Technology Market Growth Acceleration in Food Industry”, Smell Analysis Sensor in Food and Beverage Industry by imitating the sense of smell with human nose and brain by gas sensor and sent it for AI and Machine Learning that transforms the smell data into digital data and can be displayed in the form of a report, thus, making food properties and qualities being able to be analyzed from the smell. The electronic nose has continuously been developed by a Team of Thai Researchers from Mahidol University. It is a portable electronic nose product convenient to use, cheaper than those sold abroad and design services for hire-purchase membership that responds to food industry in Thailand, especially, SMEs companies, to be able to gain access into “Smell Analysis” services at an affordable price.
Asst. Prof. Dr. Theerakiat Kerdcharoen, Faculty of Science, Mahidol University, Project Chief, disclosed that, Research Team of the Faculty of Science, Mahidol University, jointly founded MUI Robotics Co., Ltd., a technology startup company having expertise in smell classification technology for at least 20 years to push IoT Sensor Research and AI System for Commercial Use. Dr. Kerdcharoen was inspired by two Scientists, the 2004 Nobel Prize Laureates in Medicine, namely: Prof. Richard Axel and Prof. Linda B. Buck who discovered the process of “Perceiving, Classifying and Recognizing Smells” of humans, with genes that are expressed in the form of olfactory receptor proteins, thus, making us recognizing a lot of smells. The Thai-made electronic nose uses the working principle of many kinds of gas sensors that work together by performing function to sense the smells like those of human noses, collecting and converting electrical signals from the sensor to become a digital signal for processing to classify smell patterns by having software to distinguish and classify smells that can be displayed in graph form for analysis.
Dr. Kerdcharoen continued to give his account that, the electronic nose technology has been invented and developed for a long time where people, in general, understand that it is a sensor to sense substances. It is not a new story. But, the electronic nose is remarkably distinctive in terms of its property for its ability to turn smell data into the valuable digital database that can immensely be used such as digitalization of smell designed for use as an indicator of the environment, smell analysis for diabetes and cancer diagnosis, smell and taste design for developing new food flavors or digital smells in the metaverse world that are currently being developed etc.
Electronic MUI-Nose for Food Industry.
Ms. Wandee Wattanakit, MUI Robotics Co., Ltd., CEO said, smelling and analysis to classify smell are very necessary in food industry. Over in the past, 5 workers, at least, were required to be used to sense the smell and find the average value in the analysis of smell in industrial factories which was the production cost. The average value acquired could possibly be erroneous and inaccurate. In addition, after the recent COVID crisis, the losses of COVID patients’ smelling senses have hindered the analysis accuracy by humans to reduce. Therefore, it was an opportunity for the company to enter into the market over the period of the past 2 years. Deriving from the restriction of costly electronic nose technology in foreign countries due to the reason that most of the devices and controllers are manufactured from foreign countries plus there are costs of maintenance that requires specialists to adjust the operation to be in line with the products to be tested, thus, making the domestic SMEs’ accessibility impossible. MUI Robotics can therefore become an option to help push Thai SMEs in developing their products to meet more competitive quality. In this connection, the company has developed the hire-purchase system which is well responsive by large scale entrepreneurs and SMEs, especially, the latest portable electronic noses that can sense the objects whether are of solid, liquid and gas nature by connecting the sample smell circulation system on the sensor device for accurately analytical result. The electronic MUI-Nose can provide comprehensive services in food and beverage industry such as raw material smell sensor services, quality control and research and development in frozen seafood and meat industry, rice and plant-based products, canned foods, vegetable oils, soft drinks, etc. Samples of smell sensor in the production process of the food industry are such as the smell sensor of mud in fish, authentic jasmine rice, coffee bean roasting checks, checking the smell of tea leaves for determining whether they are from the real production source or not, detecting adulterated smells and formaldehyde, etc. At present, MUI Robotics is selling electronic noses to countries in ASEAN and Europe, including requesting for relevant standards for self-preparedness to expand distributions to European and global markets.