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High performance breath alcohol analysis
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Embedded Systems.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3286-2572
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Alcohol breath testing on a larger scale will save lives. Alcohol intake affects the human body by significantly longer response time to external stimuli. In demanding situations where the senses need to be on alert a prolonged reaction time can be the difference between life and death, both for the intoxicated subject and for surrounding  individuals.

The aims of this thesis include investigations of a new type of breath alcohol sensor, designed for operation without a mouthpiece, both with regards to sensor performance as well as usability in relation to various breath  alcohol  screening applications.

In many situations where breath alcohol screening is suitable, there is a need for quick and easy use. The instrument should interfere as little as possible with the regular routines and procedures. One such task is driving. To accommodate for these needs in an in-vehicle application, the breath alcohol sensing system must be seamlessly installed in the vehicle and not interfere with the normal behavior of the sober driver. Driving is also a task requiring high level of concentration over a prolonged period of time. In the U.S. alone thousands of lives are annually lost in accidents where the driver was under the influence of  alcohol.  Similar numbers have been recorded for Europe. The potential for a system handling the needs for ease-of-use is huge and may result in successful products.

The results presented within this thesis provide experimental evidence of sufficient sensor performance for screening applications with an instrument operating without a mouthpiece. Smarter calculation methods were also shown to be a feasible path to improved measurement reliability. Important steps towards an even more passive solution for in-vehicle screening is also presented. Experiments showed that given enough time and sensor resolution, passive alcohol detection systems are feasible.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Västerås: Malardalen University Press , 2017.
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 240
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Research subject
Electronics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-36634ISBN: 978-91-7485-350-6 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-36634DiVA: diva2:1147109
Public defence
2017-11-15, Delta, Mälardalens högskola, Västerås, 09:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-10-04 Created: 2017-10-04 Last updated: 2017-10-12Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Critical Performance of a New Breath Alcohol Analyzer for Screening Applications
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Critical Performance of a New Breath Alcohol Analyzer for Screening Applications
2014 (English)In: Intelligent Sensors, Sensor Networks and Information Processing (ISSNIP), 2014 IEEE Ninth International Conference on, 2014, 1-4 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In screening applications there is a need forimproved breath alcohol analyzers. Accuracy, specificity,usability, and through-put are critical to the device performance. Objective: To characterize the critical performance of a newcontactless breath alcohol analyzer. Methods: The device ischaracterized by measurements using artificial breath gas andhuman subjects. Breath sampling is performed in ambient airusing carbon dioxide as a biomarker. Results: Resolution andinter-individual variation, response time, and specificity wereshown to meet the requirements of industrial standards. Thefeasibility of contactless measurement was demonstrated. Conclusions: The new device exhibits sufficient performance inmoderately diluted breath samples. Further work is underway toreach the objective of unobtrusive breath alcohol analysis.

National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-29903 (URN)10.1109/ISSNIP.2014.6827626 (DOI)000356411200040 ()2-s2.0-84903733096 (Scopus ID)978-1-4799-2842-2 (ISBN)
Conference
IEEE Ninth International Conference on Intelligent Sensors, Sensor Networks and Information Processing (ISSNIP) Singapore 21-24 April 2014
Available from: 2015-12-10 Created: 2015-12-10 Last updated: 2017-10-04Bibliographically approved
2. Unobtrusive and Highly Accurate Breath Alcohol Analysis Enabled by Improved Methodology and Technology
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Unobtrusive and Highly Accurate Breath Alcohol Analysis Enabled by Improved Methodology and Technology
Show others...
2014 (English)In: Journal of Forensic Investigation, ISSN 2330-0396, Vol. 2, no 4, 1-8 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The study objective was to evaluate a novel method and technology for unobtrusive determination of breath alcohol in relation to current industrial accuracy standards. The methodology uses carbon dioxide as a tracer gas detected by sensor technology based on infrared spectroscopy. Part one of the investigation was to analyse the performance of hand-held prototype devices and included tests of resolution, unit-to-unit variation during calibration, response to alcohol containing gas pulses created with a wet gas simulator, and cross sensitivity to other substances. In part two of the study, 30 human participants provided 1465 breath tests in both unobtrusive and obtrusive use modes. The results of both parts of the study indicate that the prototype devices exceeded present industrial accuracy requirements. The proposed methodology and technology eliminate the previous contradiction between unobtrusiveness and high accuracy.

Keyword
Breath alcohol analysis, Infrared spectroscopy, Accuracy, Unobtrusiveness
National Category
Engineering and Technology Medical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-28102 (URN)10.13188/2330-0396.1000016 (DOI)
Projects
ITS-EASY Post Graduate School for Embedded Software and SystemsESS-H - Embedded Sensor Systems for Health Research Profile
Available from: 2015-06-08 Created: 2015-06-08 Last updated: 2017-10-04Bibliographically approved
3. Unobtrusive breath alcohol sensing system
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Unobtrusive breath alcohol sensing system
2015 (English)In: The 24th International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles ESV2015, 2015, Vol. Paper Number 15-0458Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Although the vast majority of vehicle drivers are sober, drunk driving remains to be a major contributor to fatal accidents. Massive deployment of unobtrusive breath alcohol sensing systems could potentially save tens of thousands of lives worldwide every year by preventing drunk driving [1]. The work reported here is ultimately aiming at such a system. The technical performance of the present sensing system with respect to automotive requirements is summarized, and new results towards unobtrusive breath alcohol determination within vehicle compartments are presented. Breath alcohol concentration (BrAC) can be determined unobtrusively if (i) the sensing system provides real-time signals with adequate accuracy corresponding to the local concentrations of both alcohol and a tracer gas, e g CO2, (ii) the dilution of the breath is not excessive in relation to background concentrations, (iii) the sensor location can be seamlessly integrated into the interior of a vehicle cabin. All three of these aspects are addressed in the present paper. More than a hundred prototypes based on infrared spectroscopy were fabricated and subjected to automotive qualification tests in the full temperature range -40 … +85?C. In the majority of tests, adequate performance was noted. Measures are now being taken to fill remaining performance gaps. Test results with human subjects were positive and in accordance with expectations with respect to physiological variations. In-vehicle tests showed that for the best sensor position, passive breath samples allowed BrAC to be determined at a resolution of 2-4% of the US legal limit, providing proof-of-principle for unobtrusive testing. Nevertheless, vehicle integration remains to be the major technological challenge to the objective of deployment on a large scale of unobtrusive driver breath alcohol determination. The feasibility of unobtrusive breath alcohol determination in vehicles, and adequate performance of a sensor system based on infrared spectroscopy have been experimentally demonstrated. The alcohol sensing system may advantageously be integrated into vehicles, and may also be combined with other technologies to monitor driver impairment.

National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-29658 (URN)
Conference
The 24th International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles ESV2015, 8-11 Jun 2015, Gothenburg, Sweden
Projects
ITS-EASY Post Graduate School for Embedded Software and Systems
Available from: 2015-12-03 Created: 2015-11-26 Last updated: 2017-10-04Bibliographically approved
4. Development and Evaluation of Algorithms for Breath Alcohol Screening
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Development and Evaluation of Algorithms for Breath Alcohol Screening
2016 (English)In: Sensors, ISSN 1424-8220, E-ISSN 1424-8220, Vol. 16, no 4, 469Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

Breath alcohol screening is important for traffic safety, access control and other areas of health promotion. A family of sensor devices useful for these purposes is being developed and evaluated. This paper is focusing on algorithms for the determination of breath alcohol concentration in diluted breath samples using carbon dioxide to compensate for the dilution. The examined algorithms make use of signal averaging, weighting and personalization to reduce estimation errors. Evaluation has been performed by using data from a previously conducted human study. It is concluded that these features in combination will significantly reduce the random error compared to the signal averaging algorithm taken alone.

National Category
Medical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-29905 (URN)10.3390/s16040469 (DOI)000375153700049 ()2-s2.0-84962424447 (Scopus ID)
External cooperation:
Available from: 2015-12-10 Created: 2015-12-10 Last updated: 2017-10-04Bibliographically approved
5. EXPERIMENTAL PROOF-OF-PRINCIPLE OF IN-VEHICLE PASSIVE BREATH ALCOHOL ESTIMATION
Open this publication in new window or tab >>EXPERIMENTAL PROOF-OF-PRINCIPLE OF IN-VEHICLE PASSIVE BREATH ALCOHOL ESTIMATION
2016 (English)In: 21st INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL ON ALCOHOL, DRUGS AND TRAFFIC SAFETY CONFERENCE T2016: CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS, 2016, 78-86 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-33827 (URN)
Conference
International Council on Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety ICADTS 2016, 16 Oct 2016, Gramado, Brazil
Projects
ITS-EASY Post Graduate School for Embedded Software and SystemsESS-H - Embedded Sensor Systems for Health Research Profile
Available from: 2016-11-21 Created: 2016-11-21 Last updated: 2017-10-04Bibliographically approved
6. Passive in-vehicle driver breath alcohol detection using advanced sensor signal acquisition and fusion
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Passive in-vehicle driver breath alcohol detection using advanced sensor signal acquisition and fusion
2017 (English)In: Traffic Injury Prevention, ISSN 1538-9588, E-ISSN 1538-957X, Vol. 18:sup1, 31-36 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective: The research objective of the present investigation is to demonstrate the present status of passive in-vehicle driver breath alcohol detection and highlight the necessary conditions for large-scale implementation of such a system. Completely passive detection has remained a challenge mainly because of the requirements on signal resolution combined with the constraints of vehicle integration. The work is part of the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS) program aiming at massive deployment of alcohol sensing systems that could potentially save thousands of American lives annually.

Method: The work reported here builds on earlier investigations, in which it has been shown that detection of alcohol vapor in the proximity of a human subject may be traced to that subject by means of simultaneous recording of carbon dioxide (CO2) at the same location. Sensors based on infrared spectroscopy were developed to detect and quantify low concentrations of alcohol and CO2. In the present investigation, alcohol and CO2 were recorded at various locations in a vehicle cabin while human subjects were performing normal in-step procedures and driving preparations. A video camera directed to the driver position was recording images of the driver's upper body parts, including the face, and the images were analyzed with respect to features of significance to the breathing behavior and breath detection, such as mouth opening and head direction.

Results: Improvement of the sensor system with respect to signal resolution including algorithm and software development, and fusion of the sensor and camera signals was successfully implemented and tested before starting the human study. In addition, experimental tests and simulations were performed with the purpose of connecting human subject data with repeatable experimental conditions. The results include occurrence statistics of detected breaths by signal peaks of CO2 and alcohol. From the statistical data, the accuracy of breath alcohol estimation and timing related to initial driver routines (door opening, taking a seat, door closure, buckling up, etc.) can be estimated.The investigation confirmed the feasibility of passive driver breath alcohol detection using our present system. Trade-offs between timing and sensor signal resolution requirements will become critical. Further improvement of sensor resolution and system ruggedness is required before the results can be industrialized.

Conclusions: It is concluded that a further important step toward completely passive detection of driver breath alcohol has been taken. If required, the sniffer function with alcohol detection capability can be combined with a subsequent highly accurate breath test to confirm the driver's legal status using the same sensor device. The study is relevant to crash avoidance, in particular driver monitoring systems and driver-vehicle interface design.

National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-36633 (URN)10.1080/15389588.2017.1312688 (DOI)
Available from: 2017-10-04 Created: 2017-10-04 Last updated: 2017-10-04Bibliographically approved

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The full text will be freely available from 2017-10-25 08:00
Available from 2017-10-25 08:00

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