OPERATIONAL testing of a Cubic Corp metro ticket vending machine which can detect traces of explosive residue on the hands of users was undertaken in Baltimore during June (RG 4.06 p192).

A co-operative effort between the US Department of Homeland Security, Maryland Transit Administration and the state’s Department of Transportation, the test looked at the machine’s ability to identify traces of explosives compounds in a real-world application.

’The pilot appears to have met expectations and we were able to collect all the data needed in a shorter than planned test period,’ said Earl Lewis, Assistant Secretary at Maryland Department of Transportation. ’While the formal results aren’t in yet, the information gathered during this first-of-its-kind pilot appear to be good enough to take this potentially useful technology further along the commercialisation testing path’.