Having a partner who snores can become a headache for both people involved. These days, there are several solutions to cure sleep apnea and help people who snore too much. The Silent Partner smart patch takes a different route: it doesn't solve the snoring per se. Instead, it tackles the noise problem.
Silent Partner uses the principle of destructive interference to do its job. In physics, that refers to the interference of two sound waves of equal frequency and opposite phase, which results in their cancellation.
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In practice, the new device will pick up the amplitude and frequency of the sound wave caused by the snoring and emit, in real time, a sound wave with an inverted phase.
The company calls the technique "subwavelength active noise cancellation" and claims it leads to a more accurate noise reduction around the snoring person wearing the device, creating a silent zone around them. It is reportedly effective from as close as 20 cm (8 in) away.
The sound emitted by the device is acoustic, so its frequency does not produce any vibrations that could wake the snorer up. Additionally, Silent Partner incorporates an isolation mechanism, to keep its sound vibrations from being transmitted to the body through contact.
The device uses hypoallergenic medical-grade adhesive to keep itself in place over the nose during sleep. The Silent Partner kit contains 14 of those adhesive patches, and each one can be reused for up to a month.
A rechargeable battery similar to the ones used in hearing aids lasts all night. It can be recharged with a mini-USB cable and a standard mobile phone charger.
Silent Partner is currently fundraising on Indiegogo and has already attracted a lot of interest as of this posting. The early bird price is US$59. It is estimated to ship worldwide in November 2016, if all goes to plan.
The video below illustrates how Silent Partner works.