Plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

hank

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This sounds buildable; anyone have more details?

http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2012/04/plasma-flashlight-zaps-bacteria.html

"... a DC booster to step up the voltage to 10 kilovolts. One output of the booster is wired to the device's shell—or "grounded," in technical speak—while the other goes to an array of 12 fine, stainless steel needles that create a rapidly pulsing electrical discharge. The circuit has several "ballast" resistors that limit the discharge's current so that the flashlight is safe to touch...."
 

jmpaul320

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Re: Plasma Flashlight?

sounds very cool, very expensive, and very likely to blow up and kill you while youre using it if its put together wrong... i want one
 

AnAppleSnail

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Re: Plasma Flashlight?

Kilovolts can be scary. I've seen stationary plasma cutters (They hiss dramatically) and the safety requirements on their electronics. I bet you could write the scientists and get a circuit diagram. As for the effectiveness, well...I wonder which active oxygen radicals they're making - ozone?
 

mikkyo

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Kestrel

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Re: Handheld plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

This is one of the most fascinating new 'flashlights' I have ever seen. Extremely interesting stuff. Truly the wave of the future. :) Here's the article at Ray Kurzweil's (the famous MIT futurist) website: http://www.kurzweilai.net/handheld-plasma-flashlight-rids-skin-of-pathogens

Chevy-SS, I have merged your thread with the existing thread on this topic.
However, I like your thread title better so I've renamed the existing thread somewhat. :)
 
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yifu

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Re: Handheld plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

Interesting concept! But why not get a 15W 6 die 295nm high powered UV flashlight to do the same thing? And get a tan at the same time as well:devil:
 

T45

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Re: Handheld plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

Someone just posted that to my facebook page today! Wanted to know if I had heard of it. Ahhh, being a flashoholic....
 

lafirefighter

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As a lifelong germaphobe...this is relevant to my interests. LOL :)

I don't like that they say it takes "minutes" to kill bacteria, but what would kill it in seconds would probably be harmful to your skin.
 

Canuke

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Wouldn't it kill the "good" ones as well though?

Yes, it would. Overall, this device would probably find itself limited to local and topical antisepsis; it is essentially a localized free radical generator/oxidizer (it works on the same principle as the old Sharper Image "Ionic Breeze" air purifiers), similar to peroxide at the chemical level. It needs exposure to air (nitrogen/oxygen) so wouldn't likely be useful internally.
 

Lynx_Arc

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Re: Handheld plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

Interesting concept! But why not get a 15W 6 die 295nm high powered UV flashlight to do the same thing? And get a tan at the same time as well:devil:
Or just go outside for a few hours in the sun for free.
 

cerealkiller

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Re: Handheld plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

Or just go outside for a few hours in the sun for free.
i agree.......typical office workers really need to get a few minutes of sunshine through out the day..summer is pretty much here, get out a bit =)
 

fyrstormer

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Re: Handheld plasma flashlight rids skin of pathogens

Good idea for sterilizing surgical wounds, but pointless for everyday use. There are germs everywhere, and if you kill the weak harmless germs on your skin, you make room for robust harmful germs. Where do you think MRSA came from? Hospitals incompletely sterilized enough staph-infected equipment for long enough to naturally-select only the strongest and deadliest staph germs, and now that's the kind that infect people's skin after surgery.
 

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