Few things are more irritating than the sound of an approaching mosquito just as you are dropping off to sleep.
With any luck, in the morning, you will only be left with an itchy wheal but in some parts of the world mosquito bites can be lethal; both humans and animals can become infected with dangerous microorganisms carried by certain types of mosquito. Malaria, yellow and dengue fever as well as the Zika and the West Nile virus are all passed on by mosquito bites. The WHO estimates that more than one million people die annually from infections passed on by mosquitoes. It looks like state-of-the-art technology may soon be able to zap these pesky little critters before they get a chance to do their worst.
There must surely be many engineers and makers who have already pondered possible electronic countermeasures to swat or zap the pest. The Bill Gates foundation funds research into eradicating the threat but the solution has been a long time coming.

How Bzigo's bug zapper will look in production.
Image: Bzigo.

Look, it's there…

Bzigo is a startup who have been showcasing a mosquito tracking device at this year's CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas. The device scans a room optically for mosquitoes and sends a message to a smartphone when one is detected. The device throws a halo of laser light around the unsuspecting beast as it lies in wait so you will be able to spot it and swiftly dispatch it with a rolled-up newspaper.
Detection is carried out with the help of a camera and an IR light source.
Research is currently underway on an ambitious second-generation device in the shape of autonomous micro-drone that will also be able to deliver the kill. Whatever the outcome, it looks like it’s going to be some time before I can look forward to a truly restful night’s sleep.