Massachusetts firm scans cargo containers for DHS

ACTON, Mass., 18 April 2005. Passport Systems, Inc. today announced that the Homeland Security Advanced Research Project Agency (HSARPA) of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has awarded a contract for research and development in support of advanced detection systems for nuclear and radiological devices.

Apr 18th, 2005

ACTON, Mass., 18 April 2005. Passport Systems, Inc. today announced that the Homeland Security Advanced Research Project Agency (HSARPA) of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has awarded a contract for research and development in support of advanced detection systems for nuclear and radiological devices.

The contract is for the initial phase in a multi-phase program to develop and build a prototype scanner system that could be deployed in seaports, borders and airports worldwide to detect nuclear, radiological, explosive and chemical devices. The initial award is for $1.6 million.

Passport Systems' research uses nuclear resonance fluorescence imaging (NRFI), a highly accurate technology that automatically and rapidly detects the existence of nuclear devices, radiological or "dirty bombs," explosives, chemical weapons and other contraband. NRFI identifies these threats by scanning the constituent chemical elements of the contents of a cargo container, vehicle or suitcase. This technology identifies the contents of a container or suitcase without having to open it up and does not depend on a human operator attempting to make a visual identification of possible threats. This is in stark contrast with the current generation of high-energy x-ray scanning devices.

"This award represents the recognition of the potential of nuclear resonance fluorescence imaging in next generation scanning systems. It is an important step in Passport's efforts to develop a comprehensive, non-intrusive scanner to detect WMD, explosives and other threats to the nation's security," said Robert Ledoux, president and a founder of Passport Systems.

Passport Systems was founded in December 2002 to commercialize nuclear resonance fluorescence imaging technology, which was developed by William Bertozzi, a professor of physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and one of the company's founders. Passport Systems is exclusively licensed by MIT to use its nuclear resonance fluorescence imaging patents.

For more information, see www.hsarpasbir.com or www.hsarpabaa.com.

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