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New Horizons of Thermodiagnostics
September 17, 2008 19:22

Any one, who took a walk in a summer forest and was nearly eaten by thousands of angry and hungry mosquitoes, thought about a wonderful ability of these insects to find “fresh warm lunch”, in other words, objects, which are warmer than their environment. Mosquitoes are genial nature’s creation – unique natural thermal sensors, which cost evolution millions of years. Well, it took Russian scientists much less time to develop new thermally sensitive elements – Z-thermistors, which are perfect for temperature regulation, alarm devices for set temperatures and sensors for thermal diagnostics of oncological diseases.

The “heart” of Z-thermistor is the n-p semiconductor structure, silicone with small inclusions of atoms of other elements. Authors keep exact composition, technology and configuration of z-thermistor a secret, despite they have patented their development in Russia, Europe, China and America. Mentioned n-p structure reacts of temperature changes by shifting from one stable state with low current to another stable state with very high current. The temperature, which causes transition of the structure, is easily determined – all you have to do is changing element’s supply voltage. That is why thermistors are also called “readjusted alarm devices for set temperatures” – this means changing supply voltage leads to change in temperature, which causes abrupt current step, which can be detected easily, since its amplitude is quite significant even without gain – up to 80 of feed voltage. And one more thing – no additional devices for gaining output signal are required.



Another important aspect is that thermistors can control a wide range of temperatures – from 40 degrees below zero to 120 degrees above zero (Centigrade). This offers a great area of application for these devices – they can serve as alarm devices for set temperatures in residential, storage and industrial buildings, cars and aircrafts, engines, braking systems, fire alarms – the list has no end. Of course, we are not trying to say that all mentioned objects lack thermal sensors, but Z-thermistors are much more sensitive than any other existing heat sensors, not to forget about low cost, small size and simplicity of thermistors.

As for thermal diagnostics of oncological diseases – Z-thermistors can become the basis for a device, much simple and cheaper than well-known thermovision cameras. Said cameras search for areas, warmer than the rest of patient’s body surface, since we know that body temperature over tumors is 0.5-1.5 degrees Centigrade higher than over normal tissues. Well, thermovision cameras are quite expensive and not simple to operate. Z-thermistors are also effective in detection of warm zones near mammary and thyroid glands, but much cheaper and allow avoiding disturbances and atmospheric distortions. Moreover, you don’t need to go to the clinic for such type of diagnostics – just scan your body with a Z-thermistor. This small and safe device is suitable for other medicinal needs – endoscopic examination or temperature monitoring, for instance.

Source: Russian Science News

Kizilova Anna

Tags: Russian medicine health    

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