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Novel THz explosive sensor

Trainee Achievements

Novel THz explosive sensor

Terahertz (THz) technology is marketed as standoff explosive detection for homeland security applications. Although it has been demonstrated in the lab for many years that THz may be used for non-contact sensing of explosive compounds, it has never been feasible for a soldier, officer, or operator to use the technology until now. During this reporting period, IGERT trainee Brian Schulkin from physics led a team of researchers from electrical engineering and computer to demonstrate one of the first completely handheld THz standoff reflection measurements of both explosives and pharmaceuticals. Improvements in THz technology and the development of novel software algorithms make reflection measurements quick and easy; This device is now labeled as an "explosive sensor" instead of a THz spectrometer. The results from Brian Schulkin’s team landed a NAVY Phase II proposal for $1.8M for the commercialization of our novel THz explosive sensor.