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New fingerprint method to catch thieves faster

IANS  |  London 

Tracing snatchers and thieves can soon become much easier as researchers have now developed a more reliable fingerprinting method using sweat pores.

The method images the sweat pores in a human hand using a polymer that glows fluorescent and changes colour when it comes in contact with tiny droplets of water.

"The sensor technology developed in this study has the potential of serving as a new method for fingerprint analysis and for the clinical diagnosis of malfunctioning sweat pores," said the researchers led by Jong-Man Kim, a chemical engineer at Hanyang University in South Korea.

The colour-changing polymer that can be deposited using an ink-jet printer.

When a fingertip is pressed against it, the polymer changes colour from blue to red and glows in the places where it comes into contact with sweat, producing a dotted pattern that constitutes a unique fingerprint.

Although the idea of using sweat pores for fingerprinting is not new, this is the first time that a fast, reliable and cheap method has been made available.

The new method could also be used to diagnose sweat-pore disorders, because it can distinguish functioning pores from non-functioning ones.

The study appeared in the journal Nature Communications.

First Published: Thu, May 01 2014. 17:58 IST