Advanced Photonix Wins Research Contract for Border Security Inspection Wand

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) awarded API's subsidiary, Picometrix, LLC a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract for $100,000 over six months. The company will exhibit the feasibility of integrating a hand-held time-domain terahertz (TD-THz) inspection wand combined with special sensor technologies to create a multi-sensor based approach for detection of concealed threats.

"This contract is another indication of our strengthening relationship with the DHS, which first began in 2004 with feasibility demonstrations for checked baggage screening utilizing our T-Ray 2000® platform. Our relationship with DHS continued in 2006 with funding to demonstrate the feasibility of replacing worrisome nuclear gauges, which are used extensively in industrial process and quality control, utilizing our non threatening T-Ray 4000® product platform," said Richard (Rick) Kurtz, Chairman and CEO of API.

A key feature of the TD-THz inspection wand will be its ‘to do away’ with the need of imaging during security checks (associated privacy concerns too). The wand will be able to detect concealed objects on the body of a person without imaging.

This feasibility study is the first step in combining various sensor technologies together into a single device to give the DHS a viable solution to the very complex problem of threat detection. This Phase I contract is synergistic with the $1.8 million contract recently announced to develop a TD-THz based anomaly detector for the security market. "We are pleased with our opportunities to develop products for the $4.5B Security market, which we believe holds significant long term growth opportunity for our T-Ray technology," stated Richard (Rick) Kurtz, Chairman and CEO of API.

With successful completion of Phase I, a Phase II follow-on contract will be discussed to develop and demonstrate a prototype multi-sensor wand for threat detection based upon the company's existing T-Ray® product platform. Depending on results delivered, successive phases are in the pipeline. So a successful Phase II would be followed with a Phase III DHS system testing and deployment for threat detection.

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