Currently a beekeeper has two choices for testing the moisture content other than guessing. Use a traditional manual refractometer and estimate the exact percentage or use a more accurate, fast digital refractometer at a cost of $300-$450. This may change soon with the introduction of a small handheld spectral analyzer. It’s based on near-IR spectroscopy and measures the unique fingerprint of the light reflected by individual molecules. It can be used to analyze numerous things including moisture levels.
Until now this technology cost thousands of dollars and might take up a fair amount of desk space. But thanks to this kick starter project, the SCIO device can record a scan in a few seconds and send it to your smart phone. It’s too soon to tell how many applications may arrive from this, but based on the existing examples of sugar content of a watermelon, recognizing materials, measuring hydration of the human body, etc. this might give rise to a whole new set of testing equipment such as blood sugar levels (without needles) and measuring the moisture in honey! Not bad for a $150 device.
Personally I’m curious if this could also be used to detect brood diseases, health of bees and other applications.