Move over, breathalyzer – Texas teen invents new gadget

by Sharlyn Petit
     While most teens are busy logging driving hours and perfecting their parallel parking skills, one Texas teen is thinking about how to make driving safer for everyone on the road.
     Krishna Reddy, 13, was one of the top 10 finalists in 3M’s 2015 Young Scientist Challenge, a video competition for the nation’s next generation of scientists, open to students grades 5-8.
     Reddy’s thought was to create a device that could detect more than just alcohol consumption. His invention? A cardboard toilet paper roll + flashlight + digital camera + computer program = pupil dilation detector.
     While a breathalyzer can only detect alcohol consumption, Reddy’s invention uses a computer program to analyze 1-second videos of involuntary reflexes to detect a variety of drugs that affect pupillary response, including marijuana.
     So, he’s detecting drugs and potentially preventing accidents before he’s even enrolled in driver’s ed. Bravo, Krishna, and bravo, science!
     View his and the other young scientists’ video presentations on the Challenge website here.

by  Jon Osterberg



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