Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Detecting IED's from a distance

From Homeland Security News Wire

Researchers develop IED detecting laser

Published 26 September 2011

Improvised explosive devices (IEDs) have proven to be the deadliest threat to allied troops fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq, but researchers have developed a laser beam that could help neutralize these dangerous weapons

A team from Michigan State University has createda laser beam that can “sense” where bombs are by making molecules vibrate. The researchers say that each molecule vibrates with a unique frequency, so when the laser hits an IED it could determine if it is an explosive based on its frequency.

Dr. Marcos Dantus, the lead developer of the laser detector, explained that detecting IEDs has proven to be particularly challenging due to the chemical compounds present in the environment that mask the bomb’s molecular makeup.

Having molecular structure sensitivity is critical for identifying explosives and avoiding unnecessary evacuation of buildings and closing roads due to false alarms,” he said.

With the laser, troops can use it to analyze the chemical composition of an object from a safe distance. The beam combines short pulses that “kick” the molecules to make them vibrate with longer pulses...

A very interesting article.

Go read the rest of it here.

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