A compact olfactometer for IMS measurements and testing human perception

Ville Nieminen, Markus Karjalainen, Katri Salminen, Jussi Rantala, Anton Kontunen, Poika Isokoski, Philipp Müller, Pasi Kallio, Veikko Surakka, Jukka Lekkala

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)
    38 Downloads (Pure)


    Production of easily controllable and measurable odor stimuli is needed when studying human olfaction, olfaction-related physiology and psychological reactions to odors. Controlled odor producing instruments are called olfactometers. For testing and calibrating new olfactometers or sensor arrays, a reliable input signal has to be produced to verify their accurate functionality. A common input signal in various olfactometers has been the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in gaseous form. We present a compact olfactometer able to produce controlled continuous odor stimuli from three individual channels. For measuring the output gas flow, we used a ChemPro 100i (Environics, Finland) device that is based on aspiration ion mobility spectrometry (aIMS). IMS is a robust and sensitive method for measuring VOCs and is used especially in detecting toxic industrial chemicals and chemical warfare agents, but the technology is also suitable for other olfactory-related applications. The olfactometer was used to produce synthetic jasmine scent using three main odor components from jasmine oil and all the components were diluted using propylene glycol. The dilutions were supplied to the system using programmable syringe pumps, which guided the dilutions to individual evaporation units. We conducted experiments to verify the functionality of our olfactometer. Analysis of the ChemPro100i data showed that olfactometer can use different odor components to produce continuous, stable output flows with controlled concentrations.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)71-80
    Number of pages10
    JournalInternational Journal for Ion Mobility Spectrometry
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2018
    Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • Human perception
    • Ion mobility spectrometry
    • Odor
    • Olfactometer

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    • Publication forum level 1


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