Sunday, June 7, 2009

Zapping Bugs?!

The article I found is entitled "'Star Wars' scientist create laser gun to kill mosquitos".  I was actually directed to the article from the article entitled "New Technology in a Down Economy" to where I read the post. The article was published March 16, 2009 by Anouk Lorie.

Every 30 seconds a child in Africa dies from Malaria according to the World Health Organization. In hopes to prevent this, scientists in the United States are developing a laser gun that could kill mosquitos in a small amount of time. With this devise, the more than one million deaths that occur each year from the disease could be greatly lowered. 

The laser fires at mosquitos by detecting the audio frequency created by the beating of their wings. It then fires and destroys the mosquito, toasting it on the spot. The laser is able to sweep across an entire area, burning millions of mosquitos in a few minutes. The idea is to mount the lasers on lamp-post type poles and put around villages to create a type of shield against the bugs. 

One question that came across my mind when processing this new invention is what harm can it do to the ecosystem. However, scientist explain that the laser will be able to distinguish between mosquitos that are and aren't dangerous and also other insects. There really is no such thing as a good mosquito though, so there really is no threat anyway. Another problem I see is cost. How much would one laser be and how many would be needed to cover an entire village? Small villages will not be able to afford to purchase and set up this technology, destroying the purpose of the invention.

I really do think this laser is a great idea! Mosquitos not only are a nuisance, they're deadly. With this new invention lives can be saved, so not is it really sweet that the bugs get zapped, but really awesome that the death rate will drop. 


  1. This is a great invention that is going to safe a lot of lives especially in Africa.

  2. It's definitely going to be too expensive for people to buy. DDT is a cheap chemical that has been used previously. DDT was proven to be effective against malaria, saving countless lives. However, its usage has been banned by the world because it hurts the environment and may cause cancer.