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How many different answers do you want to this?
As for whether you can detect smells in space - I would personally advise against trying to stick your nose outside the micro-environment of a spacecraft just to have a sniff of what is outside.
Quote from: another_someone on 18/05/2007 20:40:06As for whether you can detect smells in space - I would personally advise against trying to stick your nose outside the micro-environment of a spacecraft just to have a sniff of what is outside.Ok then, say we used an electronic nose. Would that detect any smells or odours?
The University of Warwick has been actively involved in the research and development of electronic nose instrumentation since the early 1980s
found thisQuoteThe University of Warwick has been actively involved in the research and development of electronic nose instrumentation since the early 1980shere: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/eng/eed/research/srl/contents/current_research/electronic_nose/my memory being what it is, i may be wrong on the chalk thing. but im sure its pretty close.
That's why NASA is developing the Electronic Nose, or ENose for short. It's a device that can learn to recognize almost any compound or combination of compounds. It can even be trained to distinguish between Pepsi and Coke. Like a human nose, the ENose is amazingly versatile, yet it's much more sensitive."ENose can detect an electronic change of 1 part per million," says Dr. Amy Ryan who heads the project at JPL. She and her colleagues are teaching the ENose to recognize those compounds -- like ammonia -- that cannot be allowed to accumulate in a space habitat.Here's how it works: ENose uses a collection of 16 different polymer films. These films are specially designed to conduct electricity. When a substance -- such as the stray molecules from a glass of soda -- is absorbed into these films, the films expand slightly, and that changes how much electricity they conduct.Because each film is made of a different polymer, each one reacts to each substance, or analyte, in a slightly different way. And, while the changes in conductivity in a single polymer film wouldn't be enough to identify an analyte, the varied changes in 16 films produce a distinctive, identifiable pattern.