Sophisticated Portal Monitor Added to the Counterterrorism Nuclear Detection Arsenal

Dec. 21, 2006
Innovative, adaptable radiation detection and identification systems called FIND (Flexible Illicit Nuclear Detection) are advanced spectroscopic portal monitors capable of real-time detection and identification of illicit special nuclear material (SNM).

The commercially available FIND monitor, from Berkeley Nucleonics Corp. (BNC), is adaptable to multiform applications at checkpoints, wet ports and critical infrastructure facilities. The FIND system can monitor for radioactive materials in highway-speed vehicle traffic, mail parcel facilities, bulk cargo, small water-borne vessels and vehicles moving through roadside checkpoints. The portal also can be configured as a discreet fixed mounted detection system to monitor slow-moving packages, luggage, pedestrians or a defined area such as the lobby of a building.

It is that flexibility which inspired the FIND (Flexible Illicit Nuclear Detection) name, notes David Brown, BNC's president. He said FIND systems are powered by ARAM, which brings together commercially available hardware with state-of-the-art detection algorithms from a leading DOE laboratory. Designed and manufactured by a team of engineers who specialize in remote surveillance and complex electronically controlled systems for the military, ARAM's modular design and flexibility allows it to be easily adapted to a large number of applications.

FIND is capable of identifying the smallest levels of radiation. Separate audio and visual alarms are provided for both gamma and neutron emissions through a simple Windows-based user interface. Additional vehicle lighting and sirens as well as digital video cameras can be integrated into the FIND system's processor interface for recording alarm events and further reach-back analysis.

About the Author

Sandy Smith

Sandy Smith is the former content director of EHS Today, and is currently the EHSQ content & community lead at Intelex Technologies Inc. She has written about occupational safety and health and environmental issues since 1990.

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