This Box Can Tell If You’re Getting High in a Hotel Room

Getting High in a Hotel Room

The tried-and-true strategy of blowing smoke through the window screen is about to become obsolete. Purveyor of buzz-kills, a new device dubbed the AirGuard can alert the concierge if you decide to light up. Bad news: it’s set to become a staple in hotel rooms across the world.

Built by Dartmouth professor Joseph J. BelBruno and his team, the small box is able to tell the difference between marijuana smoke and cigarette smoke, thanks to sensitive built-in monitors. BelBruno tells Vice that at first, the plan was to create a device that could only detect nicotine. Soon, however, hotels began to request marijuana-sensitive devices as well.

Getting High in a Hotel Room

While it’s noted that marijuana smoke is not as damaging to hotel furniture as cigarette smoke, BelBruno says that hotel guests can still tell if there’s a lingering smell the day after. Something that poses a problem when you’re trying to rent a room out consistently.

To tackle this problem, the AirGuard seeks to become the trusted snitch of not only hoteliers but apartments, dorm rooms, nursing homes (sorry, gramps) and other shared living spaces. Unfortunately, it comes in two very convenient sizes as well:



Picthx FreshAir

AirGuard plug-in detector fits into a standard two-unit wall receptacle with tamper resistant screws and provides pass-through access to the power outlet. It operates continuously to monitor the room environment. Data is stored in on-board memory. Detected smoking violations are reported to a central monitoring system via Wi-Fi and the owner is immediately notified via email.




Picthx FreshAir

AirGuard wearable unit is battery powered and fits in the palm of your hand. It may be configured to detect, in real time, nicotine from secondhand cigarette smoke or components of marijuana smoke (or both). It records smoking events to internal memory so that a permanent record of time-stamped smoking events is retrievable. The device communicates via Bluetooth technology and the user interacts with the unit via our Android app.

As for  the “secret” secret chemical that the device senses to know when you’re smoking weed? Hint: It’s not THC and they’re not telling, yet.


Charisma Madarang

I enjoy long walks to Taco Bell.