Northstar LED Lights Up Your Skin With Biohacking

It’s a surgically implanted piece that lets you lighten up a little.

Ryan O'Shea | Grindhouse Wetware

Biohackers can place an LED device under their skin, which can flash through and even backlight a tattoo.

Grindhouse Wetware, a biotechnology startup company based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is now producing a device it calls Northstar Version 1 — a circular, battery-powered creation about the size of a watch face that features five red-glowing lights. However, only its lighting visual is really important for anyone who uses it as intended — a showpiece to be implanted under the skin.

Grindhouse Wetware employee Ryan O’Shea posted this photo to Instagram:

Once inserted under the dermis, the quintet of red lights shine through, giving the host a radiant patch (as well as a row of serious stitches alongside). The implant, according to a story in Motherboard, is activated by a magnet, and the lights shine for about 10 seconds at a time before shutting off. The Northstar is battery-powered, and cannot be recharged.

“You know, people from the biohacking community wanted it,” Grindhouse’s Shawn Sarver told Motherboard. “They contacted us because they wanted to light up their tattoos. That’s how we generate our implants, we let the community inspire us.”

Grindhouse Wetware does have a website that informs readers that these are implants for sale, but doesn’t show much. For an actual look at the Northstar V1, the best bet is to visit the company’s Facebook page, which shows the device in use.