At The Sound Of The Beep, Get Out Of The Sun

Strong evidence linking sunburn to skin cancer puts a damper on a day at the beach. It's hard to know how much sun is too much. Now, Saitek Industries Ltd., a Swiss-owned company based in Hong Kong, has a product that can help. It's a wristwatch that monitors exposure to ultraviolet B (UVB) light--the dangerous rays that cause sunburn--and sets off an alarm when you've had too much.

Called Sunwatch, the device contains a sensor for UVB as well as a microprocessor. Sun worshipers program into the watch their skin shade and the sun protection factor (SPF) of the lotion being used. Sunwatch automatically adjusts for changes in weather, and graphics indicate how much safe sun time is left. To stay out longer, a tanner can apply a higher SPF lotion, and the watch will recalculate exposure time. Sunwatch, which will sell for under $50, also functions as a clock and should be available in the U. S. by the summer.

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