Wireless mesh networking to foil improvised explosive devices (IED)?


Dallas, TXRF Monolithics Inc. announced that its Wireless Systems Group is participating in a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract awarded to Nanotherapeutics Inc. to develop an improved system to detect IEDs. The contract’s potential value is $2.4 million—of that amount RF Monolithics could provide up to $0.95 million in services and products.

Nanotherapeutics has developed a unique and patented method of detecting trace amounts of certain non-nitrogen-based explosives that can be used by the military and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to safely detect bombs. Nanotherapeutics’ method uses a unique, portable, rapid gas-chromatography system to detect IEDs. The system was successfully demonstrated in a prior project and uses surface acoustic wave (SAW) devices manufactured by RF Monolithics as sensors for specific IED materials, such as triacetone- triperoxide (TATP), which was recently implicated in the London bombings. Nanotherapeutics has received this new, second phase SBIR contract from the U.S. Office of Naval Research to refine, field test and commercialize Nanotherapeutics’ explosives detection system. In addition to commercializing Nanotherapeutics' invention, RF Monolithics will be adding wireless mesh network capability to the system to create a field-deployable array of explosive sensing devices.


Richard Phelps , senior editor, Control Engineering

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