ETH 2006 Meat Monitor


Jump to: navigation, search

back to → ETH 2006 Main PageHalf adder ideaother project ideas


General Idea

The idea of the meat monitor is to detect whether meat spoils. The design is not necessarily specific to meat rotting, but can also be used for cheese, milk or other food. The only meat specific parts are the sensoring parts, e.g., sensing putrescine and cadaverine, produced by E.coli within the meat.

During the two weeks of group work, we extended the idea to a general sensing system which is applicable as a two-step warning system or a warning-dewarning system. More details can be found in our presentation slides ( pdf version ) of the August 3rd meeting.

Input Signals


The links emerged - in part - from a short Google search and are possibly not the best choice --Dimo 13:39, 31 July 2006 (EDT)

  • putrescine , see [1] → can be detected and synthesized by E.coli [2]
  • cadaverine → also in [3]
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) [4]
  • tyramine [5]
  • cadaverine, putrescine, phenylethylamine, histamine, tyramine and tryptamine where detected in [6], but there is no online access for journals older than 11 years :-(
  • 1-undecene [7]
  • different other components can be found here [8], but their production depends - among other things - on the temperature

  • using milk instead of meat, we could use some secretions from Pseudomonas species [9]
  • AHL (Acylated Homoserine Lactones) has no significant influence on the spoilage [10]
  • with putrescine and cadaverine, we (possibly) cannot detect Lactobacillus, Staphylococcus and Streptococcus strains [11]

Pro's & Con's


  • inventive & humorous "offbeat" idea
  • "practical" benefit (counter arg.: is E.Coli on meat really practical? → YES, definitely better than this [12] ;-))


  • logical part? (wasn't really logical! → it was only a first idea, but YES it was not logical at all)
Personal tools
Past/present/future years