Science, more now than ever, has a crucial role to play in today's ever changing and increasingly complex world. Bruker's long history and expertize in producing high-performance scientific instruments has enabled the company to design and produce innovative technologies that play a major role in helping protect society through supporting homeland security and defense.
At Bruker Optik, we take pride in supplying reliable technology to continuously protect people and infrastructure across the globe. Our innovative sensors, such as the DE-tector flex and TIMON, are used to detect explosives, drugs and toxic chemicals, thereby protecting the public and helping emergency and security services to do their jobs effectively.
The DE-tector flex is our latest state-of-the-art benchtop analyzer for the trace detection of explosives and narcotics, which we have designed to meet both traditional and emerging threats. It plays an essential security role in air passenger screening and border control. Bruker's DE-tector family of instruments are key to passenger and cargo safety at many major airports worldwide, including Frankfurt, Geneva and Lyon, as well as government buildings and nuclear power plants in Europe and Asia.
Similarly, our TIMON (Toxic Industrial MONitor) - a point gas detector that run can 24/7 without operator intervention - also provides worldwide protection. The unit is mounted in key buildings and public spaces to detect and warn against toxic industrial chemicals and chemical warfare agents at ultra-low levels. Major banks, government and public buildings, and transport hubs in key cities across North America, Europe and Asia have successfully installed the detectors to safeguard their customers and citizens.
Bruker instruments are being used by multiple organizations and agencies across the US to protect its people and infrastructure from a variety of potential threats and hazards.
The US National Guard has purchased hundreds of RAID-M 100 hand-held chemical detectors for National Guard Civil Support Teams in every state and territory to form part of their kit for survey and decontamination activities. The US Navy has also deployed these detectors on submarines and intends to fit out the US submarine fleet with hundreds more. These handheld detectors are also used by US Army Installation Response Teams worldwide.
It's not just the US military who has discovered the reliability and benefit of Bruker instruments; US city and state governments are also gaining significant benefits:
Distance is a major consideration when designing a detector system that can efficiently and effectively protect ports and waterways. Bruker's RAPIDplus system remotely detects and identifies chemical threats from distances up to 5 km. The city of New Orleans has purchased two such systems: one to monitor activity at the Mississippi river, the second to be mounted to a mobile platform to monitor the river, sporting events, and other special events.
California has recently submitted a proposal for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funding to monitor ports using RAPIDplus detectors to monitor ports.
IPDS-LR protects the US naval surface fleet.
IPDS-LR Chemical Detection Systems are protecting the US naval surface fleet and we continue to provide new detection systems to the US Navy as new ships are built. Los Angeles Port Police use a RAPIDplus for its new Hazmat police boat.
Bruker instruments also protect critical US transportation infrastructure. The company has 20 automated facility monitors in Central Station and Penn Station in New York City, and additional units in Washington DC metro monitoring for chemical threats.
Measurements taken for the future:
Many emerging chemical and explosive threats surpass the detection capabilities of technologies currently in place to protect critical infrastructure in the US and around the world. The number and type of threats necessitates the need for new equipment capable of meeting these challenges.
Several years ago, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) knew the limitations of equipment currently deployed by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). DHS selected Bruker Detection to develop a new generation of explosive trace detection equipment based on mass spectrometry.
Our goal was to deliver systems that will meet the needs for aviation screening for checkpoint, checked baggage, and air cargo applications. These systems were tested at the Transportation Security Lab and Transportation Security Administration's Systems Integration Facility and will be tested at air cargo facilities later this year.
Bruker has also been instrumental in the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) SIGMA+ Program, which is designed to alert authorities to chemical, biological, and explosives threats. Designing and developing a sensor that can detect chemical threats is particularly challenging. Bruker Detection was awarded the contract with MIT Lincoln Lab and funding from DARPA to deliver a chemical sensor for the SIGMA+ program. The result is a fusion of technology developed for the DHS and for the Department of Defense. Pending a successful trial in a major city, the SIGMA+ system will be deployed to other US cities.