Researchers develop marijuana breathalyzer

(Photo credit LARS HAGBERG/AFP/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA. (WKRG/WKBN) – Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh are developing a marijuana breathalyzer that can be used by law enforcement in the field.

A team from the university’s chemistry and engineering departments are working on a device to measure the amount of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC in a user’s breath, according to a report on

CBS affiliate WKRG reports that the research was recently published in the journal ACS Sensors. The device is able to differentiate THC from other compounds found in breath such as CO2, water, ethanol, methanol, and acetone.

The machine’s algorithms were utilized to improve the selective detection of THC with better accuracy at increasing quantities of THC delivered to the chemiresistor.

The machine is not available commercially yet but is patented and could be available soon for law enforcement.

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