Connected watch: soon a sensor to improve the performance of athletes

At the University of North Carolina, we are working on a sensor capable of measuring a body’s metabolism. Objective: improve the performance of athletes and prevent injuries.

In the United States, researchers from the University of North Carolina have developed a watch- like accessory to measure the proper functioning of human metabolism . The device analyzes what are called metabolites . These are markers such as glucose level , lactic acid , pH or temperature. They are raised on the skin, thanks to a removable strip which is secured to chemical sensors. It is the sweat of the wearer of the accessory that is precisely analyzed. The data is then processed by an application available on the mobile associated with the accessory.

The advantage is that the analyzes are carried out in real time, which makes it possible to assess the state of the  metabolism of the user as and when he makes physical efforts . Scientists explain in their study that this system could be used both to measure and improve sports performance and to identify possible health problems. For athletes , hydration levels and recovery can thus be taken into account. Other markers can also be added such as, for example, the level of electrolytes in the body. For the medical sector, when the levels of analysis are outside the nails for a patient, this allows further research.

Monitor body chemistry

The accessory is about the size of a watch, but contains sensors that represent the equivalent of four bulky electrochemical devices found in laboratories to analyze the same data. The team is proud to have managed to miniaturize the equipment so much that it can be used anywhere. For scientists, this research could reduce cases of sudden death  in sports, by detecting health problems before they are critical.

The researchers are continuing their tests to verify that the sensors are capable of providing continuous monitoring of the duration . For the moment, it is unclear whether this accessory can be marketed or integrated into connected watches . In any case, its manufacturing cost is quite low (a few tens of dollars) and the removable sweat sensor can be used for at least one day.