The olfactory receptor system is responsible for the identification and recognition of airborne molecules. Odorants refer to chemicals that carry the smell, flavor, fragrance, or aroma. Perceived odorants get dissolved in the olfactory epithelium located in the nose, where millions of receptors are present. They contain specialized cells to enhance the perceiving of the molecules responsible for the smell. The olfactory receptor contains numerous dendrites responsible for the sending of nerve impulses to the brain where the olfactory bulb is located.
The human nose contains millions of olfactory receptors that usually exceed 10 million. The link between the olfactory of the brain and receptors facilitates immediate recognition of the sense of smell. The connection is also interlinked to the limbic system responsible for the emotional response to unfavorable environmental conditions. For instance, a smell of a dangerous compound influences an immediate response to move quickly out of the danger zone and seek corrective actions where possible. This explains that the message is sent to the brain, where it is interpreted and instructions are sent to the body to leave the dangerous place.
In the military, soldiers are taught how to identify different chemical smells and encouraged to respond appropriately. They are expected to act based on how they were taught to limit damages from the attack and help save lives. The reaction to unfavorable smells usually varies with individuals where the limbic systems influence a flight response. In some cases, the response may depend on the experiences or training on the best way to handle certain situations. The reaction is usually fast since survival is always prioritized. A fast reaction is possible because the sensor is directly connected to the brain, which interprets and sends immediate instructions to other parts of the body to respond to the perceived danger. The body coordinates responsible parts to take the necessary corrective actions to avoid dangerous situations. These systems support the making of appropriate decisions such as determining the quality of food and identifying dangerous substances.