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  • Britain makes camera that "sees" under clothes

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080309/..._technology_dc

    Sun Mar 9, 7:21 AM ET

    LONDON (Reuters) - A British company has developed a camera that can detect weapons, drugs or explosives hidden under people's clothes from up to 25 meters away in what could be a breakthrough for the security industry.

    The T5000 camera, created by a company called ThruVision, uses what it calls "passive imaging technology" to identify objects by the natural electromagnetic rays -- known as Terahertz or T-rays -- that they emit.

    The high-powered camera can detect hidden objects from up to 80 feet away and is effective even when people are moving. It does not reveal physical body details and the screening is harmless, the company says.

    The technology, which has military and civilian applications and could be used in crowded airports, shopping malls or sporting events, will be unveiled at a scientific development exhibition sponsored by Britain's Home Office on March 12-13.

    "Acts of terrorism have shaken the world in recent years and security precautions have been tightened globally," said Clive Beattie, the chief executive of ThruVision.

    "The ability to see both metallic and non-metallic items on people out to 25 meters is certainly a key capability that will enhance any comprehensive security system."

    While the technology may enhance detection, it may also increase concerns that Britain is becoming a surveillance society, with hundreds of thousands of closed-circuit television cameras already monitoring people countrywide every day.

    ThruVision came up with the technology for the T5000 in collaboration with the European Space Agency and from studying research by astronomers into dying stars.

    The technology works on the basis that all people and objects emit low levels of electromagnetic radiation. Terahertz rays lie somewhere between infrared and microwaves on the electromagnetic spectrum and travel through clouds and walls.

    Depending on the material, the signature of the wave is different, so that explosives can be distinguished from a block of clay and cocaine is different from a bag of flour.

    (Reporting by Luke Baker)
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    Rocket Science
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  • #2
    Oh, I bet that'll never be missused.
    The CCTV Blog.

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    • #3
      Been a while but I think it was Sony that was selling a camera to the general public that as a side effect would also photograph through certain types of cloths. After it was known to them they took it off the market.
      THE AVERAGE RESPONSE TIME FOR A 911 CALL IS FOUR MINUTES
      THE AVERAGE RESPONSE TIME FOR A .357 MAGNUM ROUND IS 1400 FEET PER SECOND?
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      • #4
        I've heard this technology discussed before. You get major personal privacy issues churning when this technology sparks again in the news, and from what I understand, similar type systems have had to use some sort of auto blurring feature to make sure the operators of these scanners are paying attention to threats and not to other things.

        Cameraman, there's a common wrong use for thermal cameras I have heard about which is similar if true (I've only heard this from users, never owned or had access to a thermal cam myself). I'll not go into it, but if you know what I'm speaking of or can figure it out, you'll get a chuckle at your keyboard...

        Geoff
        SecurityInfoWatch.com

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        • #5
          Here is the one I am referring to by Panisonic not Sony.

          http://www.kaya-optics.com/products/experiments.shtml
          Last edited by Chucky; 03-10-2008, 05:00 PM.
          THE AVERAGE RESPONSE TIME FOR A 911 CALL IS FOUR MINUTES
          THE AVERAGE RESPONSE TIME FOR A .357 MAGNUM ROUND IS 1400 FEET PER SECOND?
          http://www.boondocksaints.com/

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          • #6
            Geoff:
            The military found out to its horror the IR illuminators they fielded with the CCTV cameras enabled the viewer to see through clothing and was particulary effective on nylon apparel.
            The Night Vision Lab was notified by the IG and as a result they slightly altered the frequency and added a special filter; the problem when away.
            Enjoy the day,
            Bill

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            • #7
              From what little I understand, Terahertz radiation isn't going to allow you to "see" someone in the visible spectrum. This is basically listening for the millimeter radiation that we all emit (because we are hotter than 10 degrees kelvin), then trying to detect certain waveforms in the radiation.

              Plastic explosives have a certain T-whatever signature, as do fatty tissues, etc. I don't think this is so much hitting the target with a terahertz radiation beam and listening for black body radiation reflected off it (that'd attenuate like crazy cause we're made of mostly water, some stuff says), but just passively listening.

              I think its like passive near-infrared viewing. You can't really "see through clothes" with FLIR. I mean, you can, but the show isn't that cool. Whereas hitting someone with a NIR beam and then pointing a camera at them...
              Some Kind of Commando Leader

              "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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              • #8
                Originally posted by N. A. Corbier View Post
                From what little I understand, Terahertz radiation isn't going to allow you to "see" someone in the visible spectrum. This is basically listening for the millimeter radiation that we all emit (because we are hotter than 10 degrees kelvin), then trying to detect certain waveforms in the radiation.

                Plastic explosives have a certain T-whatever signature, as do fatty tissues, etc. I don't think this is so much hitting the target with a terahertz radiation beam and listening for black body radiation reflected off it (that'd attenuate like crazy cause we're made of mostly water, some stuff says), but just passively listening.

                I think its like passive near-infrared viewing. You can't really "see through clothes" with FLIR. I mean, you can, but the show isn't that cool. Whereas hitting someone with a NIR beam and then pointing a camera at them...
                You've got it right. As it says right in the article: The technology works on the basis that all people and objects emit low levels of electromagnetic radiation. Terahertz rays lie somewhere between infrared and microwaves on the electromagnetic spectrum and travel through clouds and walls.

                Depending on the material, the signature of the wave is different, so that explosives can be distinguished from a block of clay and cocaine is different from a bag of flour.


                But I'm sure people will read past that in order to scream about invasion of privacy. You wouldn't be able to tell clay from C4; or flour from cocaine; if all you were doing was "seeing" through clothing.

                There's alot of free p**n sites that beat a FLIR image
                Last edited by integrator97; 03-10-2008, 11:59 PM.
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                Rocket Science
                Making everything else look simple, since 1958.


                http://my.opera.com/integrator/blog/
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                The Future. It isn't what it used to be.

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                • #9
                  This company - http://www.rapiscan.com/sec1000.html have been around for a while and with similar technology... so, Brits did not come up with it first

                  I know one of the designers of this technology with this company. According to him, very difficult nut to crack to find customers... Besides military, only few airports actually are using this technology for a while now.. Since 9/11, it helped them, but there is always the "privacy" issues that comes up with any of their sales...

                  According to this technology notes, it actually is safer and easier to operate than electromagnetic systems everywhere... Since they do not have the financial muscle, they were unable to penetrate many industries... but things are changing...
                  http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                  http://www.everythingcctv.com

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                  • #10
                    I think its less "privacy" and more, "I don't know what you can see because my own eyes don't detect radiation in this bandwidth."
                    Some Kind of Commando Leader

                    "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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                    • #11
                      It is really good invention of security camera model which can detect the drugs, weapons and explosive stuff, hidden under cloths or other stuff of the people. It would be helpful to deter the terrorists' attacks which is a great threat in the current age.

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                      • #12
                        I understand the "privacy" issues involved with technology such as this. The technology has been around for awhile and has been in use in non-public areas for some time. The "blurring" of a persons "private areas" has been taken into account on some systems. Other systems do not bother with modesty issues. The systems I have seen that allow viewing under clothing are used by extremely background investigated people with superb professionalism. The ones I have seen are not recorded although I'm sure some probably are for evidence issues.

                        SIW Editor: Being a person that works with thermal technology on a daily basis. There are systems that will reveal more than the average person would like. And I agree that some people have used them for that fact. Although I have not personally done it, I have seen the effects of a properly (and unproperly) tuned system.

                        As the security industry adapts more and more technology, privacy issues will always be on the front lines. I think it comes down to the users of such technology. If a few bad apples use the technology for unintended purposes we cannot allow ourselves to believe this is the norm. I have heard people say that there are levels of professionalism in security, I disagree. A true professional would not stoop to tabloid tactics and always be professional in what they do. As in "Don't do anything to someone else you would not want done to you" unless they force it.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Rooney View Post
                          I understand the "privacy" issues involved with technology such as this. The technology has been around for awhile and has been in use in non-public areas for some time. The "blurring" of a persons "private areas" has been taken into account on some systems. Other systems do not bother with modesty issues. The systems I have seen that allow viewing under clothing are used by extremely background investigated people with superb professionalism. The ones I have seen are not recorded although I'm sure some probably are for evidence issues.

                          SIW Editor: Being a person that works with thermal technology on a daily basis. There are systems that will reveal more than the average person would like. And I agree that some people have used them for that fact. Although I have not personally done it, I have seen the effects of a properly (and unproperly) tuned system.

                          As the security industry adapts more and more technology, privacy issues will always be on the front lines. I think it comes down to the users of such technology. If a few bad apples use the technology for unintended purposes we cannot allow ourselves to believe this is the norm. I have heard people say that there are levels of professionalism in security, I disagree. A true professional would not stoop to tabloid tactics and always be professional in what they do. As in "Don't do anything to someone else you would not want done to you" unless they force it.
                          Well said.
                          The CCTV Blog.

                          "Expert" is something like "leader". It's not a title that you can ever claim for yourself no matter what you might know or might have done. It's a title that others bestow on you based on their assessment of what you know and what you have done.

                          -SecTrainer

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