The sound of bomb detection

Much of the technological efforts of some of the brightest in the world is dedicated to protecting people from harm. This is a perfect example as researchers work on ways to “hear” bombs before people get too close to them.

Engineers have developed an acoustic remote bomb detection system that can distinguish between bombs with large or small payloads.

The system uses an acoustic array that focuses an intense sonic beam at a suspected home-made bomb. At the same time, a laser vibrometer—developed for non-destructive inspection of materials—is aimed at the device’s casing to measure how the object vibrates in response. The way in which the casing vibrates can offer up information about what is inside.

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