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Laser Printing Technology Harnessed To Fight MALARIA

Laser technology employed in the manufacture of laser printers is so precise that ensuing images over printouts duplicate the original. Laser printers utilize the same basic laser scanning device that is used to track down mosquitoes even in mid-flight and shoot them down. This is according to Nathan Myhrvold, Microsoft former chief technology officer in a demonstration at the annual Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED) Conference in Long Beach, California. The first ever laser based mosquito anihilator is manufactured from an assortment of parts coming from laser printers, digital cameras and projectors, and is now readily available in stores and shopping stalls.

Of real importance is the manner by which the printer laser mechanism can actually pinpoint raster images on the OPC Drum with great precision and at blinding speed. When such technology is used to annihilate Malaria-causing mosquitoes, it is so effective that eradication is at the rate of 50 to 100 mosquitoes per second. And given the very low manufacturing cost for these laser devices, the state of the art mosquito annihilator would only cost less than $50.  A slow motion recorded video demonstrating how the laser based mosquito annihilator operates revealed that as the insect flew, an unexpected light beam hits it, and consquently disintegrates parts of its carcass into a cluster of smoke. The sequence was so fast and death was instantaneous that as the insect fell, its wings even continued to beat.

Actually the software used according to Myhrvold detects the speed and size of the insect and analyzes it before taking a course of action. Therefore, the device will reject a butterfly or human being for that matter because of the variance in size and movement. However, the device is programmed to react and blast its powerful laser only on female mosquitoes that happen to be slightly bigger than the male and likewise flaps a bit slower. It is actually the female mosquito that bites and carries the deadly Malaria parasite. So, if bed nets are the low-end solution to fight the deadly disease the laser device is the high-end counterpart. The laser based mosquito annihilator is likely the potent tool to shield residences, schools and even agricultural fields from parasitic attacks and even serves as substitute to health damaging pesticides.

The many uses of laser technology only goes to show that laser printers not only benefit from it but other well-intentioned applications as well such as health care. When laser technology first came out in the early part of the 19th century, it carried a reputation of devastating power. Only to be tamed later on and used successfully in all facets of endeavors that benefit mankind. The eradication of Malaria is one positive application that when laser technology is harnessed productively could help alleviate the sufferings of many.


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