Thermo Fisher Scientific has announced a partnership with Brunswick Commercial and Government Products (BCGP) to customize border and harbour patrol watercraft with Thermo Scientific Matrix RadSPEC Series 400 radiation detection systems. The Thermo Scientific RadSPEC system is engineered to quickly and automatically detect radioactive threat material or weapons, such as dirty bombs, from covertly entering the U.S. via its coastlines, ports or harbors. The system not only protects against possible loss of life, but also loss of revenue that could result if harbors or ports become contaminated and unusable and commerce is halted for a protracted period of time.
BCGP delivered the first watercraft equipped with the Thermo Scientific Matrix RadSPEC system – the 350 Challenger Boston Whaler – to the Lorain County Sheriff’s Department in Ohio; it will use the detection-enabled boat to patrol the border between the U.S. and Canada on Lake Erie. The Lorain County Sheriff’s Department is part of the Northern Border Initiative (NBI), a 58-agency task force formed to scan watercraft approaching the border for potentially radioactive or nuclear threats.
“One important benefit of having the Thermo Scientific RADspec unit on our 350 Challenger is its ‘reach-back’ capability,” said Doug Natoce, BCGP Northeastern regional and DHS accounts manager. “This means the system can upload detection data immediately to an analysis center, giving NBI officers real-time feedback about the potential threat – a tremendous advantage when the time between detection and interdiction is critical.”
“We are excited to team with Brunswick, the premier supplier of watercraft to government agencies, to deliver a state-of-the-art border and harbor patrol boat with a unique capability to make our country more safe and secure,” said Jim Monde, Thermo Fisher Radiation Measurement and Security Instruments’ Federal business development director. “We look forward to a continuing and growing collaboration with BCGP offering this solution both for domestic and international applications.”
The next-generation Thermo Scientific Matrix RadSPEC maritime system provides highly sensitive radiation detection of both gammas and neutrons with gamma spectroscopic identification in a weatherproof unit. Data is collected onboard or networked via radio to the ViewPoint™ Enterprise system, which provides actionable information and reach-back capability for situational awareness and decision support. The key to the reach-back capability is how the Viewpoint Enterprise uplinks the data in the Global Nuclear Detection Architecture MCM NIEM N.25 format. The N.25 protocol is also the standard for the Mission Critical Messaging network for reach-back support and communications with reach-back centers such as the Joint Analysis Center (JAC).