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SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY > US laser scanner to instantly know everything about you from 50 meters

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This undated image released by the Transportation Security Administration shows a sign promoting the TSA PreCheck program. AP photo

This undated image released by the Transportation Security Administration shows a sign promoting the TSA PreCheck program. AP photo

The U.S. government is close to completing a laser-based molecular scanner that will know "everything" about your body, Gizmodo.com reported.
 
The scanner will be able to detect traces of drugs or gunpowder on a person's clothing, what the scanned people had for breakfast and even their levels of adrenaline from a distance of 50 meters. 
 
The device will complete all these tasks without its intended target ever noticing that he or she was being scanned. 
 
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is planning to deploy the scanners at airports and border crossings across the country sometime in 2013, the report said. The device would be used to identify explosives, dangerous chemicals or bioweapons at a distance.
 
Gizmodo's report said the technology was not a new invention but a vast advancement over the current scanner technology, saying it was "a million times faster and more convenient than ever before." 
 
The scanner worked by firing "a laser to provide molecular-level feedback at distances of up to 50 meters in a matter of picoseconds," enabling it to be used on each and every single passenger going through airport security, rather than just on suspects or randomly selected people. 
 
The scanner was developed by Genia Photonics, a company formed by PhDs with specialties in lasers and fiber optic in Montreal in 2009. The technology they came up with was so "incredibly effective" that they were subcontracted by In-Q-Tel, which was described in Gizmodo's report as "a company founded ... by a group of private citizens at the request of the Director of the CIA." In-Q-Tel says they are "the bridge between the CIA and new technology companies."

July/15/2012

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