Scientists have developed an analog white noise to smell


20/11/2012

This fragrance was given the title of white odorless. According to the description of researchers it is not pleasant, but not offensive.

This smell was discovered during experiments mixed odor molecules wide range of fragrances. It was found that even if the two mixtures was common components of fragrance becoming more similar components as added. When they contained about 30 components, most mixtures smelled the same and successfully coped with a pungent smell, or rather with his disguise.

According to the researchers, the resulting smell, which is hardly found in nature, has parallels with both white light and a "white noise" that can be obtained with a uniform distribution of all wavelengths of the visible spectrum and the different frequencies of sound waves, respectively.

Given that our nose contains hundreds of different odor receptors, this phenomenon was a surprise to scientists, as told Noam Sobel, a neuroscientist at the Weizmann Institute in Rehovot, Israel, who led the work, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. "At first glance it may seem that the more the odor is added, the more" unique "to get a flavor," - he said - "but as it turned out, all the way around."

The results of these studies indicate that more components comprise a mixture, the more similar they are flavor. Volunteers began to consider similar mixture with 20 or more components, while increasing the number of components to 30, called them "very similar."

As white color can be of different colors, each of which, however, is identified with the white, there are various shades of white odor.

Researcher smell Donald Wilson from New York University, described the discovery as "fundamental." "It allows us to know the basics of how the olfactory system perceives the mixture", - he said.

Hiroaki Matsuno, a researcher at Duke University odors in Durham, North Carolina, said the discovery confirmed the idea that the olfactory system does not detect individual molecules, but the flavors in general.

Does this finding any practical value? Further experiments Sobel and his team, answered this question in the affirmative. White successfully mask the smell of pungent smells, for example, the smell of a public toilet.

Original: Nature.com


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