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New product warns when sunburn is close

One of the main problems with sunburn is that you can never quite tell when it is going to occur.

Well, students at Michigan Technological University have developed a new product that could help to solve this problem.

They have created a patch that can be attached to your skin and will show you when you’re most at risk of getting burnt.

The patch is skin adhesive and UV sensitive, it displays an image that will slowly disappear as it is exposed to the sun’s rays. Once the image has vanished you will know it’s time to seek shade to avoid being burned.

The researchers have produced three versions of the product to take into account the fact that people have different skin types and not everyone burns at the same rate.

As the patch is UV sensitive, it will ‘notice’ when someone is in the shade or has applied sun lotion, meaning it provides an accurate picture of total damage.

Megan Frost, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering, said: “There are other personal UV monitors out there, but what makes this one unique is that it’s extremely simple and inexpensive.”

The patch received the Best Overall Award in the invention disclosure competition at Michigan Technological University’s 2013 Undergraduate Expo. If made commercially available, it would be inexpensive to produce – costing just 13 cents (eight pence) per patch in materials.

It is thought the product could be ideal in helping parents ensure their children are staying safe while playing outside in the sun and would also be useful for protecting the tender skin of babies.

Sunburn is a painful and irritating condition that is proven to be directly linked to skin cancer. The best way to avoid getting burnt is to stay in the shade when the sun is at its strongest.

However, this doesn’t mean you have to be cooped up indoors. A shade sail is the perfect way to enjoy being outside, while staying protected from the sun at the same time.

Here at Shaded Nation we provide shades made by Sail Shade World, which can block out nearly 99 per cent of harmful UV rays. Click here to learn more.

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