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Aspects of Explosives Detection

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Detection and quantification of trace chemicals is a major thrust of analytical chemistry. In recent years much effort has been spent developing detection systems for priority pollutants. Less mature are the detections of substances of interest to law enforcement and security personnel:in particular explosives. This volume will discuss the detection of these, not only setting out the theoretical fundamentals, but also emphasizing the remarkable developments in the last decade. Terrorist events-airplanes blown out of the sky (PanAm 103 over Lockerbie) and attacks on U.S. and European cities (Trade Center in New York and the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, railways in London and Madrid)--emphasize the danger of concealed explosives. However, since most explosives release little vapor, it was not possible to detect them by technology used on most organic substances. After PanAm 103 was downed over Scotland, the U.S. Congress requested automatic explosive detection equipment be placed in airports. This volume outlines the history of explosive detection research, the developments along the way, present day technologies, and what we think the future holds.

- Written by experts in the field who set out both the scientific issues and the practical context with authority
- Discusses and describes the threat
- Describes the theoretical background and practical applications of both trace and bulk explosives detection

About the Author

Edited by Maurice Marshall, Energetics Consultant, Defence Science and Technology Laboratories, Fort Halstead, Sevenoaks, Kent, UK; and Jimmie C. Oxley, Professor of Chemistry, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, USA
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