A Western Australian company developing an advanced explosives detection system for airport baggage screeners has been awarded $2.8 million under the Australian Government’s R&D Start program.
The company, QR Sciences, developed its first prototype detector capable of detecting three of the most powerful explosives used in letter/parcel bombs back in September 1999. Using the knowledge and experience gained from the scanner, it then began the development of a conveyorised system capable of screening larger items that was suitable for use at airports.
The conveyorised scanner itself made use of Quadrupole Resonance (QR) – a radio-frequency (RF) spectroscopy closely related to Magnetic Resonance Imaging. When employed in a scanner, it is capable of unambiguously identifying a wide range of chemical compounds including specific materials such as explosives and narcotics.
A development trial of the prototype was conducted at
The advanced prototype was successfully trialled at
With the help of the Australian R&D Start grant, QR Sciences will build on their existing QR knowledge to develop a new system that detects explosives which are difficult to uncover using conventional systems.