Bonas Project

BONAS European project (Bomb Factory detection by Network of Advanced Sensors) has been set up to develop a range of sensors for detecting parent compounds of explosive devices.

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BONAS European project (Bomb Factory detection by Network of Advanced Sensors) has been set up to develop a range of sensors for detecting parent compounds of explosive devices.

ProduttoreEneaWebTv
Autori
  • Roberto Ciardi
Data30/09/2014
LinguaEnglish
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In recent years, various terrorist attacks have been launched at defenseless citizens by attackers who are not directly linked to criminal organizations.

These attackers do not come from countries in conflict, but may live in ...

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In recent years, various terrorist attacks have been launched at defenseless citizens by attackers who are not directly linked to criminal organizations.

These attackers do not come from countries in conflict, but may live in the same places where these criminal acts take place.

By way of example, one of the latest bloody events was the mass murder in Norway in 2011 carried out by a Norwegian citizen named Breivick.

These events do not allow police to organize measures to prevent terrorist attacks since they are unpredictable and improvised.

For this reason it is essential to intervene in the preliminary stage of the attempt, which can be discovered during the purchase, storage or handling of the materials necessary for the assembly of explosive devices.

It is for that reason that BONAS project (Bomb Factory detection by Network of Advanced Sensors) has been set up. This European project is coordinated by ENEA. The BONAS partnership advisory board includes 14 partners from research institutions, industries, universities and security forces of 9 different Nations. Its goal is to develop a range of sensors for detecting parent compounds of explosive devices and to provide suitable demonstrations on their use.

 

The European Commission has thus sought to encourage European partners to provide concrete solutions to oppose these events.

 

Local and remote sensors are used in the detection of explosive devices by means of five different technologies with different enforcement strategies and have been designed and realized over 42 working months.

4 of these sensors have been tested by Enea in the Air Force laboratories Experimental Flight Center, Armaments Department at Pratica di Mare airport over five testing days.

These devices prioritize the detection of parent compounds necessary to make improvised bombs.

The investigation can be split in three phases:

  • During the first phase, called broad screening, electrochemical sensors (capable of identifying suspended or dissolved suspicious matter) are immersed in sewage waste water.
  • The second step involves the remote detection of suspicious fumes with a combination of LIDAR and QPAS sensors. The LIDAR device, based on laser techniques, determines the concentration of chemical substances in the remote atmosphere. Conversely, QPAS, based on the absorption of laser optical frequencies in an extremely sensitive photoacoustic cell, can detect to a closer position.

The LIDAR device is installed on a mobile vehicle to scan the suspect area.

In the third phase, after defining the possible location of the clandestine factory, all sensors are used, in relation to:

 

  • Sewage water with the electrochemical detector.
  • Vapor and gas emissions with LIDAR in remote operation and with QPAS for close detection.
  • Particulate with an SERS detector, the technology that through a laser beam and an extremely innovative support allows you to uniquely identify the molecules concerned.
  • Finally, a QCM (Quartz Crystal Microbalance) confirmation detector is used, utilizing the piezoelectric effect of quartz to determine the molecular weight and then back to the type of compound with extreme precision.

 

With the exception of LIDAR, which is installed on a mobile vehicle, all the sensors are appropriately hidden and located close the suspect area.

 

All BONAS sensors are linked in a network that manages all procedures, including switch-on, shutdown, power management, data acquisition, encrypted data transmission and analysis in a subsequent expert investigation phase.

Thanks to this network, the police force or law enforcement agencies can have complete and remote control of the entire system: they can manage both the individual sensors and the collected data, before planning an “in situ” inspection.

This project will be a valid support for the European Commission in order to propose new laws and regulations to member states, to ultimately ensure improved protection to citizens from these unpredictable and improvised attacks, which undermine traditional security systems.

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