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Home > News > Research Challenge: How to Defend Against Still-Undefined Chemical, Biological Attacks

May 18th, 2010

Research Challenge: How to Defend Against Still-Undefined Chemical, Biological Attacks

Abstract:
Wong said the intent is to be able to detect an organism or chemical and ascertain whether it's a potential menace. His team is working with the National Institutes of Health in human genome sequencing and applying it to chem-bio detection capabilities.

"The goal here is a handheld genomic device that's a very accurate detection device," said Richard Pate, deputy chief of the physical science and technology division.

A major concern is making sensors small and reliable enough for military use.

"That's where a lot of our resources end up going. It's not so much in the development of the science itself, but to make sure that the technology actually works the way we think it will," said Wong.

It could take a decade to miniaturize a system, but some capabilities could be fielded sooner. "It will not be handheld, but it will still increase by orders of magnitude what we're doing today," said Wong.

The division is collaborating with the Energy Department's national laboratories to build a 10- to 20-year roadmap of how scientists would apply nanoscience to miniaturize various devices. "It's a big effort to keep current with the ongoing science," said Pate.

Source:
nationaldefensemagazine.org

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