Magazine article National Defense

Customs Employs See-Through Technology at Border

Magazine article National Defense

Customs Employs See-Through Technology at Border

Article excerpt

The Department of Homeland Security is employing a new device that can peer through vehicles used in cross-border smuggling.

The "backscatter van" is deployed at about 30 checkpoints on die U S. -Mexican border to snag drug and weapons runners and human traffickers.

Drivers who arouse suspicion are asked to pull over so Customs and Border Protection agents can search their vehicles. That is where the backscatter van comes in, said Patrick Simmons, director of non-intrusive inspection technology and radiation detection at CBP.

A van with a high-power x-ray machine mounted on top cruises slowly by the suspect's parked vehicle and takes a black-andwhite image, which appears on a console in the van's cab, said Joe Reiss, vice president of marketing for the device's designer, American Science and Engineering. "Imagine you have the ability to peel away the side of a vehicle. That's what this technology does."

Reiss said the technology detects "low density" compounds such as drugs and humans - which are mostly made of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen and easier for an x-ray to pick up - as opposed to "high density" compounds such as steel. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.