IEDs

  • IEDsSandia Labs-developed IED detector being transferred to the U.S. Army

    Though IED detonations have declined in Afghanistan since a peak of more than 2,000 in the month of June 2012, Department of Defense reports indicated IEDs accounted for about 60 percent of U.S. casualties that year. Detecting improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan requires constant, intensive monitoring using rugged equipment. When Sandia researchers first demonstrated a modified miniature synthetic aperture radar (MiniSAR) system to do just that, some experts did not believe it. Those early doubts, however, are gone. Sandia’s Copperhead — a highly modified MiniSAR system mounted on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) — has been uncovering IEDs in Afghanistan and Iraq since 2009. Now, Sandia is transferring the technology to the U.S. Army to support combat military personnel.

  • Explosives detectionReducing security threats from explosives

    Researchers, as part of the Awareness and Localization of Explosives-Related Threats center (ALERT), a DHS Center of Excellence, are working on ways to detect explosives and neutralize their impact. The researchers are developing portable detectors as well as larger systems to scan for explosives. Some technologies will analyze the spectrum of light shining through vaporized samples; others will analyze solid residues.

  • IEDsArmy engineers develop new roadway threat detection system

    Explosives along roadways remain an unrelenting hazard for deployed soldiers; U.S. Army engineers have developed a system for detecting possible threats by identifying potential threat locations on unimproved roads; the system can perform region of interest cueing of threats at greater standoff distances, which can be further interrogated by the radar as the vehicle gets closer to the threat

  • Explosives detectionDifferent technologies aim to replace dogs as explosives detectors

    Bomb-sniffing dogs are the best and most popular way for airport security quickly to detect anyone planning to bring explosives to an airport; scientists are trying to change that; Dr. Denis Spitzer and his colleagues, for example, are working on a sensor that will detect vapors of TNT and other explosives in very faint amounts; the device they are trying to create would replace dogs as the top bomb detecting method in the field

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  • IEDsLifelike, cost-effective robotic hand disables IEDs

    Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories have developed a cost-effective robotic hand that can be used in disarming improvised explosive devices, or IEDs; the Sandia Hand addresses challenges which have prevented widespread adoption of other robotic hands, such as cost, durability, dexterity, and modularity

  • Explosives detectionU.S. Army trains rats in explosives detection

    Landmines kill between 15,000 and 20,000 people a year, and continue to kill adults and children decades after a conflict ends; the U.S. Department of Defense currently relies on dogs as the animal of choice for explosives detection, but Pentagon researchers want to see whether rats can be trained to do the job; rats are smaller so they can search smaller spaces than a dog can, and are easier to transport

  • IEDsAdvanced IED detectors save lives

    Almost 60 percent of all coalition forces wounded or killed in Afghanistan since the start of the war in 2001 have been due to IEDs; to complicate matters, insurgents in Afghanistan have been increasingly constructing IEDs to circumvent simple metal detectors; some IEDs contain rudimentary materials such as wooden boards, foam rubber, and plastic containers; the finished product contains very little metal making it difficult for a traditional metal detector to pick up

  • Explosives detectionSilkmoth inspires novel explosive detector

    Scientists, imitating the antennas of the silkmoth, Bombyx mori, designed a system for detecting explosives with unparalleled performance; made up of a silicon microcantilever bearing nearly 500,000 aligned titanium dioxide nanotubes, the device is capable of detecting concentrations of trinitrotoluene (TNT) of around 800 ppq 1 (that is, 800 molecules of explosive per 1015 molecules of air), thus improving one thousand-fold the detection limit attainable until now

  • IEDsGrowing use of IEDs by anti-government insurgents in Syria

    The monthly number of IEDs reported in Syria jumped 134 percent from December to January; analysts say this is an indication of foreign involvement with the rebels

  • Explosives detectionTrinity University students help raise bomb sniffing dog

    With the help of students at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, Jjurgens is being trained to fight against terrorism; Jjurgens, a four-month old yellow Labrador retriever, is the only dog in the United States being fostered at a university or school under the Transportation Security Administration Canine Breeding and Development Center program

  • Explosive detectionDetecting explosives from a distance with laser beams

    Scientists have found a way to detect chemicals over long distances, even if they are enclosed in containers; the scientists tested the system by trying to detect frequently used explosives, such as TNT, ANFO, or RDX from a distance – and the tests were successful

  • IEDsArmy wants IED detecting paintball gun

    The U.S. Army is currently exploring how to turn an ordinary paintball gun into an explosive detecting tool; the Army hopes to create a gun that can shoot specially designed projectiles at a suspected improvised explosive device (IED) to determine if it is an explosive or not

  • IEDsTerrorists using sophisticated uni-directional bombs

    Terrorists have learned to develop increasingly sophisticated explosives as evidenced by the uni-directional bombs detonated last week in Karachi, Pakistan that killed three Pakistan Rangers and injured several others

  • IEDsResearch centre to combat devastating effects of roadside bombs

    Gaining a better understanding of the injuries caused by roadside bombs and improving both treatment and the means of protection are key aims of a new £8 million research center launched the other day; designing “intelligent” combat boots to deflect the impact of a roadside bomb and diagnosing damage more quickly in the injured to reduce future medical problems are two potential benefits

  • DisastersTurkish prisoners riot following aftershock, quake death toll now 432

    After a particularly strong aftershock rattled Turkey, terrified Turkish prisoners rioted after authorities refused to let them out