The naked truth about using smartphones to detect species of mosquitoes

Another Friday, another naked truth.

Chris Smith, also known as the Naked Scientist chats about a recent discovery made by a researcher at Stanford University and chats to Eusebius McKaiser about the beneficial relationship between mobile phones and mosquitoes.

Smith says that mobile phones are being used to analyse the sounds made by mosquitoes. He adds that there are roughly 3 500 different species of mosquitoes around the world but only a handful of them are capable of transmitting diseases like Malaria.

There are hundreds and millions of cases of these diseases that have lethal consequences, says Smith.

Scientists are still trying to work out where the mosquitoes are, in what sorts of densities, and how they move around - the painstaking way.

Chris Smith, the naked scientist

Smith adds that scientists need to execute the laborious task of deploying an entomologist, (someone who understands how insects work) into the field to collect samples of mosquitoes and calculate them. He adds that there are limited resources and not enough time to execute this arduous task.

He says that a researcher at Stanford University published a paper which highlighted the use of the mobile microphones in mobile phones to detect the various species of mosquitoes.

Microphones in mobile phones are so advanced, that they are tuned to pick up voices in all kinds of conditions, he explains, adding that the sounds of a mosquito’s wings map exactly the same frequency range as the human voice.

Smith goes into detail by saying that people should be able to use a mobile phone to record the sounds mosquitoes make, and work out the various types of species.

Different mosquito species have a different wing beat frequencies, says Smith. He adds that each species has a signature sound.

They have done this very detailed study, and they’ve created an app so that people all over the word can record their local mosquitoes and send in the sounds of their mosquitoes.

Chris Smith, the naked scientist

Smith says that a paper has been published showing the possibility of using your mobile device to record the mosquitos in your area, and analyses their sounds through the website.

This turns the entire world into a citizen scientist capable of informing where these animals are says Smith. He adds that this can pinpoint where the diseases are, and how they spread.

Click on the audio below to hear more...


This article first appeared on 702 : The naked truth about using smartphones to detect species of mosquitoes


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI

CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
How to mosquito-proof yourself if you're holidaying in a Malaria-area

How to mosquito-proof yourself if you're holidaying in a Malaria-area

Dr Lucille Bloomberg, from NICD, says malaria is dangerous because it’s rapidly progressive and it can get misdiagnosed.

How to prevent stagnant stored water becoming a breeding ground for mosquitoes

How to prevent stagnant stored water becoming a breeding ground for mosquitoes

Many Capetonians are doing their bit to save water by collecting rainwater and even storing their greywater.

Malaria infections on the rise in Limpopo

Malaria infections on the rise in Limpopo

Limpopo Department of Health's Philip Kruger says there are about 1% of deaths suspected to be related to malaria cases.

Drone technology to fight malaria in South Africa

Drone technology to fight malaria in South Africa

Find out how a project that could use drones to deliver sterile male mosquitoes in Africa will help stem malaria.

Significant progress made in reduction of Malaria deaths globally

Significant progress made in reduction of Malaria deaths globally

CEO of Goodbye Malaria says despite this, there was a spike in malaria cases in 2017 due to heavy summer rains.

Researchers detect first ever drug resistant malaria parasite

Researchers detect first ever drug resistant malaria parasite

Researchers have detected for the first time detected a malaria parasite that's resistant to anti-malaria drug, artemisinin.

Popular articles
We're not just cyclists - CT man turns punch-up with driver into safety message

We're not just cyclists - CT man turns punch-up with driver into safety message

He was punched in the face by a motorist last week and tracked the driver down for a meet-up, instead of laying charges.

[WATCH] The spectacular moment AB de Villiers bent the laws of physics

[WATCH] The spectacular moment AB de Villiers bent the laws of physics

The world now knows never to underestimate the athletic form of SA cricketer AB de Villiers after this gravity-defying catch.

[LISTEN] Dailene, the lady behind the video from Thursday's heist in Boksburg

[LISTEN] Dailene, the lady behind the video from Thursday's heist in Boksburg

Another heist was carried out in Boksburg on Thursday morning and led to five people being arrested.

Health Minister proposes scrapping of medical aid co-payments

Health Minister proposes scrapping of medical aid co-payments

The eradication of medical aid co-payments is one of a number of changes to the medical aid scheme proposed by Aaron Motsoaledi.

SANDF soldier arrested for robbery on trial for attempted murder

SANDF soldier arrested for robbery on trial for attempted murder

Operations chief, General Barney Hlatshwayo's personal driver was arrested on Tuesday.

3 emergency numbers you should have on speed dial and how they work

3 emergency numbers you should have on speed dial and how they work

These are the emergency numbers you should have on your cellphone and this is what you must understand about how they work.