Electric condoms with Internet remote-control

Condoms are pretty unpopular, though required for safer sex.

There, I said it. REQUIRED.

Required, and words like it, are not exactly great for the libido. They take the spontaneity out of sex. They make sex sound like manual labor, or worse, something potentially dangerous. But condoms are a necessary evil in terms of birth control, but also the transmission of disease.

One of the major complaints about condoms is that they decrease sensation. Making the condom thinner can minimize the loss of sensation, but it can’t remove the problem. And, making it thinner can allow for breakage and tearing, which defeats the entire purpose for wearing the rude rubber in the first place.

So the big question for a long time has been, how do we make condoms more popular and pleasurable to use? Well Bill and Melinda Gates, through their foundation, are sponsoring a competition to look at and answer that question.

There have been some ingenious ideas. Many have had to do with thinness and shape of the condom, among other factors. But two guys have been thinking outside of the box. They’ve come up with an electric condom. They call it the “Electric Eel.”

Electric condoms

Early prototype of an electric condom.

Early prototype of an electric condom.

Now before you understandably freak out at the possibliity of electricity being applied to your nether regions, the voltage (and, hopefully, the amperage) are both low.

What they’ve done is attach a microprocessor to trigger the stimuli. Studies using electricity on parts of the body other than the condom-zone have shown that electricity applied at low frequency (at or below about three cycles per second), and low voltage, can be extremely pleasurable.

These parameters produce a warm, tingling feeling. And that could make condom use more pleasurable for the wearer, even if there is a slight decrease in sensation from loss of direct skin-to-epithelium contact.

What these guys did is to first make one prototype in which they sewed electrical wires along the area of the condom that would cover the under surface of the penis (the more sensitive area.) Yes, the wires were covered and padded. Next, our brave researchers (though the test subjects were clearly far braver) tested the prototype extensively, and found that people really liked it. But, it leaked because of the sewing done to the condom.

The Internet to the rescue!


The actual prototype.

So our curious cocksters developed their second prototype. This model looks like a blood pressure cuff wrapped around a cucumber (because the demo model is quite literally a cuff wrapped around a cucumber – see image to the right). Again, they have wire leads attached along the area where the base of the penis would fit. (They don’t explain or demonstrate how this bulky bundle would ft into an orifice anywhere near normal size.)


A look at the circuity inside the electric condom.

But they added an addition to this one. It can be stimulated via the Internet, even by someone else at some distance from the erectile event.  (The NSA is going to have a field day with this one.)

They’ve also added a chest harness. The active partner wears the harness. The harness then records his respiratory rate and delivers impulses based on how fast he breathes. The faster he breathes as he becomes more aroused, the more frequent and pleasurable the electrical discharges. The demonstration in the attached video looks like fun. Unfortunately, it doesn’t show how the he of the protected penis interacts with another person using his wrapped cucumber club. Though it definitely looks like great fun from an onanistic standpoint.

These prophylactic professionals, Firaz Peer and Andrew Quitmeyer, PhD students from Georgia Tech, are trying to get some additional money to continue their probing research. They’ve started a fundraising drive on Indiegogo, that has raised around $1000 of the $10,000 neeeded.  (Anyone donating $350 and up gets their own prototype!)

One can only hope their research will reach an explosive conclusion.

Volunteer testing the electric condom and harness.

Volunteer testing the electric condom and harness.

(H/t The Independent) And the video below is their Indiegogo proposal.

Mark Thoma, MD, is a physician who did his residency in internal medicine. Mark has a long history of social activism, and was an early technogeek, and science junkie, after evolving through his nerd phase. Favorite quote: “The most exciting phrase to hear in science... is not 'Eureka!' (I found it!) but 'That's funny.'” - Isaac Asimov

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