03.03.2015

Arktis given green light to develop neutron detector platform for DARPA

Arktis Radiation Detectors Ltd has announced that the Defense Advanced Projects Research Agency (DARPA) has approved the company to continue the development of its next generation neutron detection platform.

The platform - which features Arktis proprietary technology - will be twice as sensitive and as little as one tenth of the cost of other systems currently on the market. Arktis aims to deliver first systems later this year, and start mass production in 2016.

With governments and agencies across the globe on alert and increasingly concerned about the evolving threats to world security, the new detectors will be able to counter the movement of shielded special nuclear materials such as plutonium and other radioactive materials that, in the wrong hands, could be maliciously used to devastating effect. Legacy detection systems have typically been restricted by their limited detection ranges and the high costs associated with their deployment and operation. However, the new generation of detectors being developed by Arktis - and featuring their own Rugged-by-Design Detection Technology - combine a scalable solution with significant cost and performance benefits. The highly versatile systems will be the first of their kind and will be able to provide protection against threats on a much larger scale than is possible today.

Arktis originally won a development phase contract from DARPA - awarded under its SIGMA program - last July to create the next generation of neutron detection systems. Since then, scientists at the company have been developing the new technology platform at their headquarters in Zurich. The company has responded quickly to the challenge, with the new systems already passing a rigorous feasibility assessment.

Rico Chandra, CEO of Arktis Radiation Detectors said “we are extremely proud of the work we are doing with DARPA and of the range of new systems we are creating. We really believe they will provide a step change in capability over current systems and will fundamentally change the way we approach the challenges to security around the world.”

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