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Proceedings Paper

Design and validation of inert homemade explosive simulants for X-ray-based inspection systems
Author(s): Anthony A. Faust; Sabatino Nacson; Bruce Koffler; Éric Bourbeau; Louis Gagne; Robin Laing; C. John Anderson
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Paper Abstract

Transport Canada (TC), the Canadian Armed Forces, and other public security agencies have an interest in the assessment of the potential utility of advanced explosives detection technologies to aid in the detection and interdiction of commercial grade, military grade, and homemade or improvised explosives (HME or IE). The availability of suitable, non-hazardous, non-toxic, explosive simulants is of concern when assessing the potential utility of such detection systems. Lack of simulants limits the training opportunities, and ultimately the detection probability, of security personnel using these systems. While simulants for commercial and military grade explosives are available for a wide variety of detection technologies, the design and production of materials to simulate improvised explosives has not kept pace with this emerging threat. Funded by TC and the Canadian Safety and Security Program, Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC), Visiontec Systems, and Optosecurity engaged in an effort to develop inert, non-toxic Xray interrogation simulants for IE materials such as ammonium nitrate, potassium chlorate, and triacetone triperoxide. These simulants were designed to mimic key X-ray interrogation-relevant material properties of real improvised explosives, principally their bulk density and effective atomic number. Different forms of the simulants were produced and tested, simulating the different explosive threat formulations that could be encountered by front line security workers. These simulants comply with safety and stability requirements, and as best as possible match form and homogeneity. This paper outlines the research program, simulant design, and validation.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 May 2014
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 9073, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Sensing XV, 90730V (29 May 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2058035
Show Author Affiliations
Anthony A. Faust, Defence Research and Development Canada (Canada)
Sabatino Nacson, Visiontec Systems (Canada)
TeknoScan Systems Inc. (Canada)
Bruce Koffler, Visiontec Systems (Canada)
SecureSearch Inc. (Canada)
Éric Bourbeau, Optosecurity Inc. (Canada)
Louis Gagne, Defence Research and Development Canada (Canada)
Robin Laing, Defence Research and Development Canada (Canada)
C. John Anderson, Defence Research and Development Canada (Canada)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9073:
Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Sensing XV
Augustus Way Fountain, Editor(s)

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