Engineers Invent Hypospray

Once again bringing Star Trek into reality, researchers at MIT have invented a means of injecting medicine into a body without a needle:

Now the MIT team, led by Ian Hunter, the George N. Hatsopoulos Professor of Mechanical Engineering, has engineered a jet-injection system that delivers a range of doses to variable depths in a highly controlled manner. The design is built around a mechanism called a Lorentz-force actuator — a small, powerful magnet surrounded by a coil of wire that’s attached to a piston inside a drug ampoule. When current is applied, it interacts with the magnetic field to produce a force that pushes the piston forward, ejecting the drug at very high pressure and velocity (almost the speed of sound in air) out through the ampoule’s nozzle — an opening as wide as a mosquito’s proboscis.

Well, that was a pleasant diversion. Now, researchers: get back to the holodeck project.

Link -via Technabob | Images: Paramount, MIT.

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I remember getting inoculations in grade school and when I was in boot camp by a similar device that used compressed air to inject the vaccine into the skin. What's so different about this device?
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