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  (Source: 20th Century Fox)
Have even a trace of gunpowder on you from a shooting range? You may be in for a "deep frisking"

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is tasked with fighting "the war on terror", but of late it has been accused of creating more terror than it prevents, with invasive frisking of childrens' genital areas and a proclivity for mocking passengers' bodies sexually behind closed doors.  But all that may be but a teaser for what is to come, according to a piece by Gizmodo.

I. Prepare to be Scanned and Detained

The piece details new "molecular scanners" which work something like Big Brother's wildest wet dream, detecting each an every chemical substance on your body.

The scanners are being commercialized by Genia Photonics and employ terrahertz speed laser pulses.  The laser hardware is capable of detecting -- even through clothing or windows -- the slightest trace amounts of chemicals on the human body.  Genia claims the scanner is ten million times faster and one million times more sensitive than any other scanner -- such as the millimeter wave-based detectors.

Genia scanners
The DHS is eyeing new laser scanners to scan and detain "suspicious individuals" at police checkpoints in public locations. [Image Source: Genia]

Genia writes that the scanner can "penetrate clothing and many other organic materials and offers spectroscopic information, especially for materials that impact safety such as explosives and pharmacological substances."

Thanks to the speed, the DHS is reportedly looking to deploy the scanners secretly at inter-state borders, international borders, and in airports.  

The deployment raises some thorny issues, given the scanner's ability to detect such small traces of compounds.  For example, smoke a bit of marijuana in a region where it's decriminalized or legal for medical uses, and you may now be arrested by DHS officers at the state border.  Alternatively, you might go shooting at the gun range, but the trace amounts of gunpowder left on your clothing might earn you a date with "Mr. Happy Hands" of the U.S. Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) or DHS.

TSA pat down
You match the profile, prepare to be frisked. [Image Source: The Denver Post]

II. DHS Eyes Plotting Scanners in Shopping Malls and Other Locations

In fact, DHS agents are eyeing the possibility of rolling the devices out all across the country, scanning everyone in any public location possible for signs of suspicion.  

In-Q-Tel, the DHS contractor who is subcontracting Genia writes, "an important benefit of Genia Photonics' implementation as compared to existing solutions is that the entire synchronized laser system is comprised in a single, robust and alignment-free unit that may be easily transported for use in many environments… This compact and robust laser has the ability to rapidly sweep wavelengths in any pattern and sequence."

A scan takes only picoseconds and can be performed at distances of up to 50 meters, making it big brother's dream device.

III. Deployment is on Pace for 2013-2014

The creators are confident they can deliver on their objectives of ubiquitous privacy intrusion.  Founded by a group of laser and fiber optic Ph.D specialists, Genia is among several Universities and firms worldwide making similar ambitious claims of laser scanners with molecule-level sensitivity.

Shooting range
A trip to the shooting range could soon make you wind up in federal custody.
[Image Source: Flickr]

In Congressional testimony the DHS revealed that deployment was only a year or two away, meaning the devices could start popping up in 2013.

From there, there's no telling how far down the dystopian things could go with molecule scanner.  The scanner can sense signs of fear -- such as adrenaline -- even through car windows or in crowded shopping malls.  The DHS has already acknowledge publicly experimenting with such "future crime" profiling efforts.  In those projects the DHS expressed a desire to detain individuals in public locations who fit certain profiles that indicate they might be ready to commit a crime.  

Will anxiety about a big deadline at work lead you to be handcuffed in front of your children at the shopping mall?  There's no official word yet on such uses, but the hints are there, and the possibilities are frightening.

Sources: Genia, In-Q-Tel

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Welcome to the New World..
By rippleyaliens on 7/11/2012 7:36:41 PM , Rating: 3
With this Technology.. We can now kiss ALOT of things goodbye. Only safe place to be, is not here. Predictive crime?? Sounds like MINORITY REPORT Garbage to me. Can sniff from 150 Ft, if i Smoked a JOINT a few days ago???

I can see them putting ALOT of these devices, in 1... Schools.. 2.. Obviously Court houses.. 3.. Definitely at sporting events.. All in the quest to grab the latest boggie man..

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Reclaimer77 on 7/11/2012 7:48:48 PM , Rating: 4
If it can detect gunpowder I'm assuming it can detect narcotics like marijuana smoke, cocaine traces, alcohol and who knows what else.

Cleaned your kitchen sink recently or used household cleaners? Oooops we've detected that you *might* be running a Meth lab in your home!

Probable cause, what's that?

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By ritualm on 7/11/12, Rating: 0
RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Quadrillity on 7/11/2012 8:33:50 PM , Rating: 3
Fret not my friend, "the south will rise again".

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By chromal on 7/11/2012 8:41:59 PM , Rating: 2
Hah, I hope so. They need to be smacked back down once in a while.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Quadrillity on 7/11/2012 9:04:36 PM , Rating: 5
Ok then. Don't come to us when the U.S. Government starts enforcing their food control policies and small arms treaty with the UN.

Down here, we know how to grow food, build shelter, and shoot. Have fun when s*** hits the fan buddy. And don't think it isn't coming soon enough either. We have been putting it off for a long time now.

(oh, we also have the vast majority of the military too. Good luck with that as well. Every military member I have ever met would rather rot in hell than turn against their own friends and family)

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Oakley516 on 7/11/2012 9:35:30 PM , Rating: 1
Who gets California in this Civil War?

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Bad-Karma on 7/12/2012 12:34:47 AM , Rating: 5
I'm not sure either side would want them.......

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By TSS on 7/12/2012 1:34:08 PM , Rating: 2
Offer it to the mexicans. It used to be their territory anyway. Not sure if even they want it though.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By HrilL on 7/12/2012 12:24:36 PM , Rating: 2
I guess the south would because if you're not in a major population center on the coast then you most likely own guns, hunt, and still hate government intrusion.

The probably with CA is that while we have a lot of people that don't support any of the retarded things that go on in our state. Just the damn liberals out number everyone else yet only live in a small geographical area compared to the side of our state.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By leviathan05 on 7/12/12, Rating: 0
RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Reclaimer77 on 7/11/2012 9:05:20 PM , Rating: 4
Ya I don't think that would happen this time. Being as how the bulk of our military forces, and most of our oil refining and pumping is in the South.

Plus you yank's have been banning guns and just generally fostering liberal pussy-policies since the last one :P

Anyway fun what-if discussion aside. The last thing we need is a civil war. We need a unified armed revolution against our Government, not each other.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Quadrillity on 7/11/2012 10:43:25 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, I wasn't saying that we should have a civil war. I'm with you, the federal government need to be knocked back down more than a few pegs. And it needs to be done by the American people as a whole; not divided.

Guess I should have explained more with the "south will rise again" comment. That wasn't meant to be taken as another civil war with north vs south lol.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By MrBlastman on 7/12/2012 11:16:35 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly. A Civil War would be disastrous now versus how it was a couple hundred years ago. The degree of weaponry citizens have and abstract methods our technology now affords us would lead to something quite nasty.

If Americans want a revolution it should be versus the entire Federal Government. They've gone too far and sometimes,

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."

- Thomas Jefferson

How much more do we have to put up with in America?

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Zaralath on 7/12/2012 2:15:26 PM , Rating: 2
Good luck getting the vast majority of people to notice what's going on beyond Jersey shore, and actually care enough to do something.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Ammohunt on 7/16/2012 2:43:18 PM , Rating: 2
the sad truth they will only start noticing when the pot is already boiling and its too late to jump out.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Ammohunt on 7/16/2012 2:41:01 PM , Rating: 2
We need to fight/abandon Federalism specifically with great prejudice. I hope people are paying attention to who is currently in charge when these types of measures are being implemented. Fascism is something heaped on the right but the truth is the ideology of the current leadership lives breaths and eats it.

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By Florinator on 7/18/2012 12:22:58 PM , Rating: 2
Didn't the South get smacked down last time around?

RE: Welcome to the New World..
By kattanna on 7/12/2012 11:45:56 AM , Rating: 2
LOL man.. that could lead to some seriously embarrassing conversations while going through the airport scanners

sir.. we have detected petroleum residues all over your hand and groin region, can you please step aside..


RE: Welcome to the New World..
By geddarkstorm on 7/12/2012 2:30:09 PM , Rating: 3
What even -is- the latest boogie man that could even remotely justify this sort of invasion of privacy?

here we come!
By The0ne on 7/11/2012 6:07:59 PM , Rating: 4
1984 here we come! It's never too late I say.

RE: here we come!
By Hyperion1400 on 7/11/2012 7:17:26 PM , Rating: 3
Pfft, if you thinks it's bad for you, what will they do to me? I shoot Com-bloc surplus almost exclusively. What will they think when I walked around covered not only in Soviet! gunpowder, but also potassium chlorate?!

RE: here we come!
By Camikazi on 7/11/2012 10:14:24 PM , Rating: 2
You would probably get shot on the spot so make sure to scrub up real well before going anywhere.

RE: here we come!
By futrtrubl on 7/12/2012 12:37:54 AM , Rating: 2
And wear clean underwear, be kind to the coroner.

RE: here we come!
By Natch on 7/12/2012 9:52:23 AM , Rating: 2
Don't think that will matter much, since it's not just the soul that "vacates" the body, upon death....if ya know what I mean??

RE: here we come!
By MrBlastman on 7/12/2012 11:19:52 AM , Rating: 2
Those steel casings will eat away at your chamber and bore though, man. The rounds might be copper coated, but a lot of them are steel cored as well.

Only brass and lead for my 5.56 mm. Gotta keep it purring. :) (and an occasional steel penetrator)

RE: here we come!
By Hyperion1400 on 7/12/2012 2:46:14 PM , Rating: 3
Oh Jesus, not this crap again...

The steel they use for the casings is incredibly soft and and poses no danger to your chamber or extractor. What does happen, is that when the chamber pressure drops, the case will contract and allow a little bit of powder blow-back in the chamber. But that just requires cleaning.

As for the bullet tech, the steel used in the bullets is almost as soft as copper, and produces very fine fouling instead of the large chunks that normally break off with copper. The actual construction of the bullet is as follows:

The bullet jacket is bi-metal and has a thin copper outer-layer followed by a soft steel inner jacket; the completed round is copper-washed, which is what you are thinking of. Underneath the jacket is a layer of lead that is used to suspend the steel core - when the bullet strikes the target, the core shifts inside of the jacket to destabilize it and create erratic wound patterns - and gives the bullet the proper plasticity to form to the bore without causing increased wear.

The Russians have been putting steel through their firearms since shortly after WW2...which reminds me, some WW2 vintage ammo came up for sale...I think they have pretty much perfected the art! Besides, I'm using a 6.5lb Chrome-Moly chrome lined bore on my Mosin. If I manage to wear it out in my lifetime the Russian gun gods will have to descend from the heavens to shake my hand! :P

RE: here we come!
By Sazabi19 on 7/13/2012 11:09:14 AM , Rating: 2
Same here :( for my PSL, Mosin-Nagant (corrosive ammo, so yes Windex down barrel at the range, and Brake Free at home), and Ak47 D: My Saiga 12 chews on Winchester rounds though, slugs and Federal buck.

P.S. Brake Free burns like hell when you get it in your eye.

Health risk?
By chrnochime on 7/11/2012 6:27:07 PM , Rating: 3
Does it damage DNA or induce cancer like the current scanners do? That's what I want to know the most.

RE: Health risk?
By MrBlastman on 7/12/2012 11:21:49 AM , Rating: 3
No. You have something far worse to worry about it damaging though.

Your Freedom.

By tom.novak on 7/12/2012 5:07:01 AM , Rating: 2
Traces of cocaine can be found on 90% of U.S. Bills - does that mean, that DHS will confiscate 90% of cash in your pocket?

Anyway, sooner or later some wise guy will come up with a spray, that will cause this scanner to detect explosives and pharmacological substances everywhere, therefore making it effectively useless.

It would be really useful to use this scanner to detect pesticides and other harmful stuff in food - but I doubt, that Monsanto lobyists will allow it.

RE: cocaine
By MrBlastman on 7/12/2012 11:23:28 AM , Rating: 2
Traces of cocaine can be found on 90% of U.S. Bills - does that mean, that DHS will confiscate 90% of cash in your pocket?

How else do you think they plan on paying for these ridiculous policies and measures they've passed in the past few years? We're trillions in debt. They aren't getting it from the tooth fairy. ;)

So the scanner detects drugs on your money! Uhoh! Uncle Sam thanks you for your contribution to the United Socialist States of America.

RE: cocaine
By TSS on 7/12/2012 1:24:44 PM , Rating: 2
If you belive cash will still be of any use when hyperinflation hits you're out of your mind.

And that's only if ye olde government doesn't decide to completly move to electronic cash before that. Easyer to print after all.

haha oh wow
By tamalero on 7/12/2012 1:14:10 PM , Rating: 2
Time for witchhunting I presume?

I wonder how much of this will also be used to control other groups.. can you imagine them tracking any politician, senator..etc.. to keep them "in place" in the system?

RE: haha oh wow
By Zaralath on 7/12/2012 2:24:57 PM , Rating: 2
As a sign of good faith, perhaps all politicians that think this is a great idea should have to have these devices installed in their homes. Just to show how safe it is, and how no one could be wrongly accused of something :)

I'll cry 'wolf' when I actually see one...
By boeush on 7/11/12, Rating: -1
By darckhart on 7/11/2012 8:35:40 PM , Rating: 3
sorry, if you look hard enough, you'll find anything anywhere. eg, dioxin is in everything. this is absurd.

By ritualm on 7/12/2012 12:51:11 AM , Rating: 2
Just like all the people who say "we don't need privacy" and "it's okay to give up our rights for a little security".

Whenever these people get their way, we have neither privacy nor rights, the world is more dangerous than before, and they claim we were crying wolf.

I can't wait to read stories of people being falsely accused of things they had no part with.

By dark matter on 7/12/2012 2:17:53 AM , Rating: 3
When you see one wolf, it's too late. At that point, they are all around you and you have no way out.

"I'd be pissed too, but you didn't have to go all Minority Report on his ass!" -- Jon Stewart on police raiding Gizmodo editor Jason Chen's home

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