A research scholar in the North-Eastern Hill University (NEHU) in Meghalaya has developed a low-cost thermal device that can be used for thermal screening people in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic.
The low-cost device was developed by Vinayak Majhi, a research scholar under the guidance of Assistant Professor Sudip Paul at the Biomedical Instrumentation and Signal Processing laboratory of the university.
The thermal screening device was developed after NEHU authorities failed to get handheld infra-red thermometers from the open market in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“It took us three-and-half days to develop the contact-less temperature device after knowing that there was no such proper device available for measuring the human body temperature from a distance in the NEHU campus,” Paul said.
The infrared based non-contact temperature measurement, which can be easily customizable, was handed over to NEHU Registrar JN Nayak on March 25.
“We have been searching for the handheld thermometers in Shillong and Guwahati but it was not available. However, the research scholar came with a proposal to develop a low-cost tool to monitor the temperature of the body and we are happy that it was developed and now utilized in the campus,” Nayak said.
The device is now utilized at the main gate of the NEHU campus for screening people entering the university.
“Compromising with the outlook of the device, it can measure the body temperature very efficiently without touching the patient from a distance. It can measure the body temperature from one feet distance and show the temperature in Fahrenheit as well as the Celsius scale,” Paul said.
To measure the temperature, the examiner has to put the device in front of the patient’s face, and the device itself will measure the right distance or gap.
Paul said the essential difference of this device with other non-contact infrared thermometers is that all those devices don’t have an indication of the distance from the device with the object.
“The range is very much significant because the energy of thermal radiation decreases with distance,” he said.
Moreover, he said the equipment also calibrated with other commercially available tools and prove the very accurate result.