Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Communications, Information Processing, and Ergonomics have developed Hazardous Material Localization and Person Tracking (HAMLeT), a sensor network system for detecting explosives.
HAMLeT uses two separate sensor networks to gather chemical and kinetic information. One network uses laser scanners, which send pulses through airports and railway stations to measure the distance between objects and create a two-dimensional image of the area. This information is combined with that collected by a network of electronic sensors hidden in air ducts and wall fixtures. The hidden sensors use oscillating crystals to capture chemical molecules in the air and identify their composition. Once all the information is gathered, it is run through an algorithm that automatically marks members of a crowd with a specific color indicating their suspected threat level.
The researchers also are working on a model that uses gamma spectrometers for the identification of "dirty" bombs. Further research will look into the ergonomic design of tunnels and ways to reduce the number of false positives.
From The Engineer (United Kingdom)
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