New technology can detect weapons on people from 16 feet away

The new machine can tell whether someone is carrying weapons by reading the natural radiation emitted by people and inanimate objects.

New York police plan to begin using a new technology that will allow them to detect concealed weapons without having to perform a traditional pat-down, according to the New York Times.

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Wednesday they will start using a machine that reads terahertz, the natural radiation emitted by people and inanimate objects, which would allow police to detect weapons, the newspaper reported.

Tampa-based news station WTSP reported that the machine can measure the energy up to 16 feet away.

Related: Secret Service seeks gunshot detection technology

In one of the tests conducted by NYPD, the machine showed an object shaped like a gun underneath the clothing of a police officer, the New York Daily News said.

Although the machine itself is big, Kelly said it can be placed on the back of a truck, the Times wrote, or it could be stationed at street corners where gun violence has been a problem.

The New York Civil Liberties Union first raised concerns about “virtual pat-downs” a year ago, when Kelly first proposed the idea, according to WTSP.


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