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Dubai Customs has introduced a sophisticated scanner that can detect 25 controlled and banned items in 25 seconds, in a bid to clamp down on smuggling. “The Ionscan 500DT can also detect as little drugs or explosives as one nanogram — which is one billionth of a gram” — according to Mohammad Juma Nasser Buossaiba, Director-General of the UAE Federal Customs Authority.

The highly sensitive scanner, equipped with HD touchscreen, is one of many other advanced equipment the authority has provided the Dubai Customs with in order to tightly secure all the crossing borders of the emirate. The new devices are in line with a memorandum of understanding signed recently between the UAE Federal Customs Authority and Dubai Customs. The Federal Customs Authority will also provide training to Dubai Customs staff on how to use the new devices, apart from the regular maintenance. Source: CustomsToday.pk and WCO IRIS

X-Ray_CoverAgainst the backdrop of doom and gloom predictions by some managers in industry, Homeland Security Research Corporation analysts forecast a strong comeback of the X-ray security industry generating a solid 7% CAGR. The growth will be boosted by three main drivers:

  1. The expansion of the Asia Pacific secured facilities and aviation security markets
  2. The replacement of more than 40,000 outdated X-ray systems
  3. Despite a decade of R&D aiming at new baggage, luggage, cargo and mail screening technologies, there is no modality on the horizon that can competitively challenge the cost-performance of the X-ray based screening technologies.

According to HSRC’s report, “X-ray Security Screening: Technologies and Global Industry & Market – 2014-2020“, the global X-ray security screening industry revenues (including systems sales and aftersales service and upgrades) is forecasted to grow from $1.6 billion in 2013 to $2.6 billion by 2020.

With more than 690 pages, 254 tables and 324 figures, the new report is the most comprehensive review of the multibillion-dollar global X-ray security screening market, industry and technology trends published to date. The report analyzes each and every dollar of the industry revenues and provides data and analysis on 89 submarkets including submarket 2011-2013 data and 2014-2020 forecasts and analyses. The report addresses the “money trail” of each dollar spent via 5 viewpoints:

  • 5 geographical regions
  • 20 countries
  • 3 vertical markets
  • 4 application-technologies
  • System sales and aftersale revenues

The report analyzes the X-ray industry and technologies from several perspectives, including:

  • Current and pipeline technologies, such as single energy X-ray, dual energy X-ray, backscatter X-ray, multi-view X-ray and coherent X-ray
  • Competitive environment: 16 leading X-ray vendor profiles including their products, products description and prices. Companies include American Science and Engineering, Astrophysics Inc., Auto Clear, Eurologix Security, Gilardoni, L3 Communications , LIXI, Morpho Detection, Nuctech , Rapiscan Security Products, SAIC, Scanna Msc., Smiths Detection, Vidisco.
  • 20 countries airports: 1,195 airports with 2,352 million screened passengers (84% of global passengers). For each country, all the airports with over 100,000 annual screened passengers are presented including details on the number of screened passengers and the annual growth rate
  • Market & industry analysis: e.g., market drivers & inhibitors, X-ray security industry SWOT analysis
  • Business environment: e.g., competitive analysis.

Each new report from Homeland Security Research Corporation features more and more detailed analyses on this market. Of particular interest is the ‘country analysis’ which demonstrates just how refined this market is developing. All of this comes at a hefty price tag – starting at US$ 4,450 for a single user PDF!

Herewith a collection of articles on customs non-intrusive inspection around the world. True to form, the acquisition and use of such technology is not without controversy of some sort.

Spanish Customs to use ‘Full-body See-through’ Scanner at Frontier

Backscatter Van

American Science and Engineering’s (AS&E) Z Backscatter Van

July 2013 – The Spanish Government is to deploy a ‘Mobile X-Ray Scanner’ at the frontier to detect cross-frontier smuggling of tobacco. A Panorama Investigation reveals the mobile X-ray scan technology mentioned is one installed and operated in a mobile vehicle (van) – it is system that is potentially dangerous!

These plans are said to be part of a strategy to crack-down on cigarette smuggling across the frontier, which they say is causing untoward damage to the Spanish economy. The regional special representative of ‘La Agencia Tributaria’ (Spanish Tax) Alberto García Valera, says he has found it necessary to spend money and invest heavily on new technologies to combat fraud and tax evasion in places like the Le Linea-Gibraltar Frontier.

‘La Agencia Tributaria’ purportedly placed an order with the American company American Science and Engineering (AS&E) for the delivery of this very sophisticated, hi-tech scan system known as the ZBV S-Class.

The ZBV or Z Backscatter Van, is a mobile X-ray vehicle screening system, it uses technology known as ‘Backscatter’ which provides a photo-like images of concealed objects, such as explosives, drugs, currency trade-fraud items and of course things like cigarettes, but the latter not exclusively so.

The ZBV X-Ray Scanning equipment is integrated into a standard van type vehicle, usually powered by a Mercedes or Chrysler engine. The ZBV creates a photo-like Z Backscatter images showing materials by directing a sweeping beam of X-rays at the object under examination, and then measuring and plotting the intensity of scattered X-rays…if you’re in your car, your body will get zapped by the X-Ray beams!

Read the full report by Panaorama (Gibralter) here!

Axis Cams Integrated with X-ray Scanners Secure Korean Airport Customs

Korean Customs Integrated Control Room - Gimhae International Airport

Korean Customs Integrated Control Room – Gimhae International Airport

November 2013 – Korean Customs at Gimhae International Airport , Busan has introduced Axis network cameras and integrated it with the existing X-ray scanners for checked bags into one location. This has allowed Customs to manage its workforce more efficiently and enhance its monitoring capabilities through the “Choose and Focus” function.

An integrated X-ray viewing room has allowed Korean Custom’s management to divide the workforce into teams of two, and the accuracy of reading and individuals’ reading capabilities have been significantly improved. Since the reading staff has been grouped into teams, their level of fatigue has been reduced, and they can concentrate and read multiple X-ray scans at all times.

Network Cameras with panoramic function in each carousel monitor the CIQ customs, immigration and quarantine area that passengers must go through when departing or arriving. The cameras now permit Customs to accurately track and monitor travellers as they claim their baggage. All stages from Check-in of checked bags to their check-out are carefully recorded, resulting in disputes with travelers about lost or damaged bags can be smoothly resolved. The high-definition network cameras allow the entire route to be monitored for abnormal cargo. It is much easier to identify risks and monitor movement during incidents. Read the full report here! Source: asmag.com

Nigeria Customs takes inventory, evaluates scanning machines ahead of takeover

Nigeria Customs takes inventory, evaluates scanning machines ahead of takeover

Nigeria Customs takes inventory, evaluates scanning machines ahead of takeover

October 2013 – Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has begun an inventory and evaluation of the scanning machines with a view to ascertaining the state of the machines ahead of the December 1, take over date.

In an exclusive interview with Vanguard at the Customs Headquarters in Abuja, service spokesman, Mr. Adewale Adeniyi, a Deputy Comptroller of Customs said that consultants and experts including the manufacturers of the scanners (Smith of France) were all brought to carry test of the machines.

Adeniyi also said that more than 500 of the newly recruited men and officers of the service will be deployed to both the information technology and scanning departments. He disclosed that in the course of evaluating the machines, it was discovered that maintenance of the scanners had been compromised.

He added that the development will not in any way stop the take over of the scanning machines by the Nigerian Customs Service. The Customs spokesman disclosed that the maintenance of the machines were sub-contracted to other consultants other than the manufacturers.

Adeniyi further disclosed that the integrity of the machines in terms of maintenance have been compromised. Source: www.energymixreport.com

Nicaragua – Fixed Rate to be Charged for Customs Scanning (Fail!)

Port of Corinto, Nicaragua (Picture: Wikipedia)

Port of Corinto, Nicaragua (Picture: Wikipedia)

July 2013 – The government has recognized that it was a mistake charging for the scanner service based on the value of the cargo.

The presidential adviser for economic affairs, Bayardo Arce, believes the head of the Directorate General of Customs (DGA), Eddy Medrano, may have overstepped the mark in approving a contract with the company Alvimer Internacional y Compañía Limitada on the right to collect on the declared value of the goods that pass through the scanner system to be installed in the country’s customs offices.

“We have been made aware of this criterion of entrepreneurs and talked with President … and it is clear that a technical error was made,” the official, adding that the fee collected will be at a fixed rate as in the draft Law on Granting of Non Intrusive Inspection Services in National Security Border Controls, prior to the approval of Congress.

The concessionaire in charge of scanning services in Nicaraguan customs offices would recover its investment in 15 months and earn $220 million in the 15 year contract.

From all this money, 10% will go to the Directorate General of Customs (DGA). According to preliminary calculations made ​​by the Nicaraguan private sector, the company will invest about $22.4 million in the seven scanners to be installed in each of the seven Nicaragua customs offices, recovering its investment in just 15 months. Source: centralamericadata.com

Belissima!

February 9, 2013 — Leave a comment
HCVG Inspection System - Smiths Detection

HCVG Inspection System – Smiths Detection

Smiths Detection has announced a €19m contract with the Italian Customs Agency to supply high-energy X-ray cargo scanners for deployment at six major ports including Naples, Genoa and Bari. According to Smith’s – “We have worked closely with Italian customs for many years, not only supplying detection systems but also providing the highest standard of after-market service. This latest contract underlines the continuing success of our customer-driven approach.”

The HCVG inspection systems, which can detect contraband, narcotics and weapons, will also be used for confirming cargo details to ensure customs and excise duty and trade taxes are in order. Click here for more technical details of the HCVG inspection system 

Able to inspect up to 20 containers, trucks or vans an hour, the gantry-mounted scanners can penetrate steel 330mm thick. A detailed X-ray image, which features organic and inorganic material discrimination using viZual imaging software, is produced by a single scan of the load.

Smiths Detection offers advanced security solutions in civil and military markets worldwide, developing and manufacturing government-regulated technology products that help detect and identify explosives, chemical and biological agents, radiological and nuclear threats, weapons, narcotics and contraband. It is part of Smiths Group, a global leader in applying integrated, advanced technologies to markets in threat and contraband detection, energy, medical devices, communications and engineered components. Smiths Group employs around 23,000 people in more than 50 countries. Source: Business Wire

Smiths Detection HCVportalSmiths Detection has unveiled its next-generation high-energy X-ray scanner, the first pass-through cargo system to offer steel penetration of 30cm combined with three-colour material discrimination. The HCVP 6030 viZual, based on Smiths Detection ABRATM technology, is designed primarily for high-volume cargo screening. It can inspect up to 100 trucks or container loads per hour. The new system is a combination of proven high-energy X-ray technology and advanced material discrimination provides best-in-class performance at the lowest total cost of ownership. It is ideal for rapid cargo throughput with high safety standards for truck drivers and operators alike allowing customs quick and effective enforcement of tax, revenue and fraud laws.

Customer interest in the new cargo screener is already significant and a series of orders has been placed with Smiths Detection even before official market entry.

The HCVP 6030 viZual is based on the most powerful HCV technology platform, incorporating Optical Character Recognition, Automatic Radiation Detection, Electronic Data Interchange and Remote Service maintenance.

The HCVP series systems offer accelerators delivering energy levels from 4MeV to 6MeV, allowing for steel penetration ranging from 230mm (9”) to 300mm (11.8”) while providing a high throughput of up to 195 trucks per hour with a scanning speed of 7 km/4 mph. This innovative automatic free-flow scanning procedure will guarantee a constant vehicle flow on site.

The system’s high performance imaging capability, known as viZual technology (optional), provides the operator with detailed radioscopic images of the container or vehicle and its contents with organic and inorganic material discrimination and colorization based on atomic number for the assisted recognition of threats. The viZual feature allows for reliable results in a single scan.

The modular compact design of the HCVP provides the ability for the system to be relocated, adapting to the customer’s specific needs. The HCVP is a standalone unit which requires limited external infrastructure. The system is designed for ease of operation with a minimal footprint, while still integrating the most demanding international security screening requirements.

The HCVP system’s automated scanning procedure allows the vehicle or container to pass through the x-ray system. The scanning process starts when the end of the driver’s cabin has been detected. The driver and driver’s cabin are not scanned. When equipped with the automatic radioactive material detection – ARD (optional), the HCVP simultaneously carries out both the X-ray inspection and an analysis to detect the presence of radioactive gamma and/or neutron materials within the container or vehicle. The system requires 1 traffic receptionist, 1 system operator, an up to 8 image analysts depending on need. Source: Smiths Detection

HCVS Fixed X-Ray scanning tunnelSecurity solutions specialist Smiths Detection has received a multi-million Euro order from Nigeria for its dual view, high energy X-ray container scanner, which includes a state-of-the-art material discrimination system. The order was placed by Global Scan systems Ltd and forms part of the Destination Inspection Programme (DIP) established by the Nigerian Ministry of Finance for the Customs Authorities of Nigeria. The stationary scanner, which will be the most advanced system of its kind in West Africa, will be deployed at the customs and border checkpoint between Nigeria and Benin.

The HCVS (Heimann Cargo Vision System) with material discrimination features X-ray images that distinguish between organic and inorganic substances. The associated colour coding greatly helps in the detection of threat objects such as weapons, explosives and drugs.

The HCVS is the most powerful tool in Smiths Detection’s cargo inspection product portfolio. It is permanently installed on a dedicated site, providing a swift and non-intrusive inspection procedure for every part of fully loaded trucks and containers

Technical features of the scanner
• Stationary X-ray system for the inspection of fully loaded trucks and containers
• State-of-the-art technology for outstanding image quality
• Ideal for maritime ports, border crossings and airports dealing with heavy traffic
• Easy and fast processing with low staffing requirements
• viZual technology for real organic/inorganic material discrimination
• Top of the line system for manifest verification
• Detection capacity reaching 100%
Optional Features
• Automatic Radioactive Material Detection (ARD)
• Discrimination high energy
• Single of dual view technology
• Single or dual tunnel version
• Available in 6MeV & 9MeV (Mega electron volt)

Source: Smiths Detection