Smiths Detection Provides Explosive Detection Security Systems for Safer Ferry Travel

Transportation Security Administration's Sail II Pilot Program will deploy Ionscan 400B and document scanner systems


PINE BROOK, N.J. -- Smiths Detection, the world's leading provider of trace detection and x-ray security screening equipment, today announced it has been selected by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to participate in the Secure Automated Inspection Lanes (SAIL II) pilot program located at the Larkspur and San Francisco, California Ferry Terminals, to collect data on screening checkpoints for ferry passengers.

For SAIL II Smiths Detection is providing two Ionscan 400B desktop trace explosives detection systems and one Ionscan Document Scanner, a system which identifies traces of explosive substances by scanning passenger travel documents. Both systems employ Ion Mobility Spectrometry technology, a next-generation technology also used in the company's Sentinel II, an explosive detection walk-through trace portal, recently deployed by the TSA in airports nationwide to help improve passenger screening checkpoints.

"Smiths Detection's participation in the pilot program SAIL II expands the applications of our security screening solutions," said Mark Laustra, Vice President, Transportation Security Technology & Programs, Smiths Detection North America. "The Ionscan 400B and Document Scanner systems add effective layers to security checkpoints that will safeguard America's waterways."

The Ionscan 400B analyzes items such as checked or carry-on luggage, portable electronic devices, or packages. In eight seconds it is capable of determining the presence of traces of explosive substances. If a contraband substance is detected, the specific name is identified on the display.

The Ionscan Document Scanner collects samples by swiping the surface of documents such as driver's licenses, passports and other travel documents, over a sample disc. Subsequently, the sample disc is automatically brought into the detector for analysis and a display presents the results to operators. If detection is made, the specific explosive is identified on the display. Positive detection would mean that trace amounts of a particular explosive have been found on the item sampled and would indicate that an explosive device may be present or that the person may have been in contact with explosive material.

Thousands of Ionscan 400B and Document Scanner systems are currently deployed at major international airports, and by the military and law enforcement agencies. Both systems have also been tested at major airports and rail stations by the TSA.

SAIL II, which will be conducted for 30 days, begins August 29, 2005, and will operate from the Larkspur Ferry Terminal and then will move to the San Francisco Ferry Terminal in September.

(c)2005 Business Wire