DHS Awards $22 million for Advanced Pocket-Sized Radiation Detectors

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO) has awarded Intelligent Personal Radiation Locator (IPRL) program contracts, totaling approximately $22 million, to three companies for the development and testing of advanced pocket-sized radiation detection prototypes.

The three companies are General Electric Global Research of Niskayuna, N.Y., Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory of Livermore, Calif. and Smiths Detection of Pasadena, Calif.

The IPRL program serves to develop technologies that autonomously detect the source of radiation and reliably discriminate between normally occurring radioactive materials, background and potential threats. IPRL systems will have the capability for determining the direction, flux, energy and isotope of detected radiation, as well as the location and orientation of the alarm.

"IPRL systems show real promise for the security and safety of first responders, border patrol agents, customs and coast guard officers, and other law enforcement personnel," said Vayl Oxford, DNDO director. "Homeland Security personnel and first responders will know in real time if they confront a security or safety risk from a device that fits in the palm of their hand."

DNDO is a jointly staffed, national office established to improve the nation's capability to detect and report unauthorized attempts to import, possess, store, develop or transport nuclear or radiological material for use against the nation, and to further enhance this capability over time.

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