Novel Methods for Detecting Buried Explosive Devices
OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LAB TN
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Oak Ridge National Laboratory ORNL and Quantum Magnetics, Inc. QM are exploring novel landmine detection technologies. Technologies considered here include bioreporter bacteria, swept acoustic resonance, nuclear quadrupole resonance NQR, and semiotic data fusion. Bioreporter bacteria look promising for third-world humanitarian applications they are inexpensive, and deployment does not require high-tech methods. Swept acoustic resonance may be a useful adjunct to magnetometers in humanitarian demining. For military demining, NQR is a promising method for detecting explosive substances of 50,000 substances that have been tested, none has an NQR signature that can be mistaken for RDX or TNT. For both military and commercial demining, sensor fusion entails two daunting tasks, identifying fusible features in both present-day and emerging technologies, and devising a fusion algorithm that runs in real-time on cheap hardware. Preliminary research in these areas is encouraging. A bioreporter bacterium for TNT detection is under development. Investigation has just started in swept acoustic resonance as an approach to a cheap mine detector for humanitarian use. Real-time wavelet processing appears to be a key to extending NQR bomb detection into mine detection, including TNT-based mines. Recent discoveries in semiotics may be the breakthrough that will lead to a robust fused detection scheme.
- Land Mine Warfare