Bruker Detection Corp. has begun the final phase of development on monitors designed to detect hazardous chemical vapors in government buildings and other facilities.
Included in the Phase III-b testing are field trials of the device inside airports, subways, train stations or other high-traffic venues. The tests are being funded by the Science & Technology Directorate of the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security under a special program to develop new counter-terrorism tools for first responders and other DHS personnel.
In addition to Bruker Detection, a unit created by Billerica, Mass.-based corporate parent Bruker Corp. in December, 2008, two other firms are participating in the Autonomous Rapid Facility Chemical Agent Monitor project — Hamilton Sundstrand, a division of United Technologies Inc. (NYSE:UTX) and the Smiths Detection unit of the Smith Group PLC, a privately held British conglomerate.
DHS previously awarded a $750,000 contract to Bruker when it advanced to Phase II in May, 2005, and another $1.3 million at the start of Phase III in September, 2007. Bruker also has launched a line of commercially available chemical monitors, building on its ARFCAM work and the company’s core mass spectrometry technology.