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Device Instantly Detects Date Rape Drug

technology

How a prototype gadget might make consuming alcohol a safer activity

Hilary Weaver
  • 23 july 2014

One in four women in North America will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime. And according to a piece by The Daily Show last month, 55 colleges are under investigation for how they handle the sexual assaults that happen to one in four women on campus. According to developers of date rape prevention device, pd.id, 25 percent of rapes and assaults happen because of a date rape drug. Date rape drugs decrease awareness, increase libido and erase memory, and although they are a common danger to women, men have been harmed by them as well.

Personal Drink ID, abbreviated as pd.id, is a battery-powered date rape drug detector that can tell the user if his or her drink has been effected within a matter of seconds. The reusable device just has to be dipped into a drink before an LED light goes off. A green light means the drink is clear, and a red light signals that the drink has been affected by a date rape drug.

The data programmed in the device compares the drink to compounds recorded to have been found in other drinks affected by date rape drugs. After the device captures a sample of the liquid in its reservoir, it performs three tests to measure light, current and temperature. pd.id can be synced with smartphones and sends an alert to the user’s phone if a drug is detected.

The device is not yet available and will not be on the market until its developers can raise enough funds. The product needs to raise $100,000 before it can go on sale at an individual retail price of $75 per device. Developers have a goal to be in mass production by April 2015.

Thirty-five percent of the fundraising goes to engineering the product, 35-percent to software, 20-percent to manufacturing, 5-percent to testing and 5-percent to testing. Those interested in contributing to the fundraising can donate directly on the product’s site and can promote it by liking and interacting on Facebook and Twitter. If pd.id soon becomes available to college students and post-grads alike, sipping a drink might come with far fewer precautions.

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