Terahertz Radiation Scanners for NYC Cops

fictional representation

Police in New York City, along with the U.S. Department of Defense, are researching new technology in a scanner placed on police vehicles that can detect concealed weapons.

It’s called Terahertz Imaging Detection. It measures the energy radiating from a body up to 16 feet away, and can detect anything blocking it, like a gun.

Source: CBS New York


Terahertz radiation can pass through clothing, paper, cardboard, wood, masonry, plastic and ceramics. It can also penetrate fog and clouds, but cannot penetrate metal or water.

Terahertz radiation can be used in surveillance, such as security screening, to uncover concealed weapons on a person, remotely. Many materials ‘of interest’ have unique spectral “fingerprints” in the terahertz range. This offers the possibility to combine spectral identification with imaging.


Safety of Terahertz Radiation

A study published in 2010 and conducted by Boian S. Alexandrov and colleagues at the Center for Nonlinear Studies at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico performed mathematical models how terahertz radiation interact with double-stranded DNA, showing that, even though involved forces seem to be tiny, nonlinear resonances (although much less likely to form than less-powerful common resonances) could allow terahertz waves to “unzip double-stranded DNA, creating bubbles in the double strand that could significantly interfere with processes such as gene expression and DNA replication”

Source: Wikipedia



Will Terahertz Radiation Scanners be an invasion to your privacy as you walk down the street and are unknowingly scanned? Could your life be put in danger by a false-positive scan while your Leatherman on your belt or in your pocket is misconstrued for a weapon? What if you actually do have a license to carry? Will you be in danger from the agent doing the scanning who will not know that you have a license to carry? Since the U.S. Dept. of Defense is involved, how long will it be before this is federalized via the Dept. of Homeland Security across the nation? Will this scanner show nearly nude images similar to the scanner used by the TSA? If so, will agents start scanning the ‘hotties’ as they walk to work to get their kicks? Are you all okay with this? Are we still free?

Leave your comments…

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  1. Why can’t they use this for something on the lines of fire fighting? But no the government goes one step beyond that and finds the way to control the people instead of saving lives.

  2. I for one am NOT receptive to this or any of the up-chuck being forced down our throats. They are preparing conditions to set us up to make owning self defense items illegal. This will be my call to arms to leave my family behind to fight for our country, be it alone or otherwise.

  3. Mate the arrows are the wrong way round its just a camera it doesnt emit any radiation. It just recieves what a person emits. And believe me you literally glow with it! Its just like heat anything warm emits Thz. Several researchers say that the splitting of the DNA with Thz radiation from our own body is what gives us cell division in the first place. Not so scary is it now. Your blasted every day. They even use it for astromony. 99% of all radiation since the big bang is in the Terahertz. Its just low energy heat! It used to be called Far infra-red, yes the same as those deep heat saunaa!!

    1. I’ve changed the image to match the notion. The focus of the issue is mainly one of invasion of privacy and further encroachments on our ‘freedoms’ of movement. One wonders how far is it that people are willing to go with oppression for the sake of security.

  4. Let’s just say I’m in the Safety Industry and did a thesis paper on THz.
    Thz has been a great tool for scanning in manufacturing processes but is still in the infancy. It’s been used on the NASA shuttles, in Europe to uncover images under paint for museums and it is being tested for security purposes. It does not have to reveal the body image like a milimeter wave scanner. MMW scanners are the current body scanners and they still require an image to determine if an anolmoly or threat is present.

    THz determines the chemical makeup so that hand held scanners can detect hidden explosives under clothing, in a Turbin, in mail envelopes.

    This has great application potential for harzardous material responses as the distance increases.

    The tearing apart of DNA has not been verified by multiple labs or universities that are studying THz.

    Like all studies, make sure they represent real world conditions….by the way you get bombarded by THz everyday. THz is emitted from every object.

    1. Like most any technology, it can be used for good, and for bad. While it can potentially discover if granny is packing heat while walking down the street, the technology further encroaches on our liberties as a ‘free people’ if used to arbitrarily scan citizens as they walk the streets, etc. I do realize that some people are perfectly okay with gov’t being in their lives and even in their homes, or random searches and checkpoints, etc, but that was not the intent of the founders of this country. Unfortunately we have allowed this invasion of our privacy for the sake of our own supposed security, all in the name of that dreaded word, ‘terrorism’.

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