If you thought airport security was invasive with full body imaging x-rays and full body pat downs, imagine hidden scanners that will be able to know everything about you….and they’re portable.
According to a recent report by Huffington Post, within the next few years the Department of Homeland Security plans to install Picosecond Programmable Laser scanners, a new laser-based molecular level scanner, in airports and border crossings across the United States. This device would be capable of detecting anything ranging from traces of drugs or gun powder on your clothes to the amount of adrenaline currently in your body from 164 feet away.
According to Gizmodo, the system, designed by Genia Photonics, is also ten million times faster and one million times more sensitive than the other systems currently in use, meaning it can systematically scan everyone passing through security and not just randomly sampled people. The laser scanner will be able to penetrate clothing and organic material while collecting and delivering spectroscopic information in real-time.
The unique design of the system is “comprised in a single, robust and alignment-free unit that may be easily transported for use in many environments… This compact and robust laser has the ability to rapidly sweep wavelengths in any pattern and sequence.” This makes the scanner capable of being used practically everywhere, according to the report.
The Daily Mail reported that Keith Brown, a council youth development officer traveling through Dubai on his way back to England, had recently been jailed for four years after a microscopic amount of cannabis had been detected on the bottom of his shoe using similar sensors. According to officials:
“Customs authorities are using highly sensitive new equipment to conduct extremely thorough searches on travellers and if they find any amount – no matter how minute – it will be enough to attract a mandatory four-year prison sentence.”
These hidden scanners could be in place as early as 2013 in the United States.