Researchers from the University of Glasgow and Strathclyde University have developed an artificial tongue based on nanoslices of gold and aluminium metal arranged in a checkerboard pattern, which can detect subtle differences in how the metal "tastebuds" absorb light while immersed in a liquid sample. Statistical analysis of these differences (plasmonic resonance) have permitted different branded whiskies to be identified, and even within each brand differences of maturation for 12, 15 and 18 years could be identified. The artificial (bimetallic nanoplasmonic) tongue can be used for any liquid sample by comparing the sample's plasmonic resonance to that of an authentic liquid sample, and it does this rapidly and accurately. A paper on the artificial tongue has been published in RSC's journal Nanoscale.
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