ChemImage Sensor Systems has been awarded a contract to develop a chemical fingerprint identification system (CFIS) for the US Army.
Awarded by the Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC), the company will design a specialised system for the identification of exogenous materials collocated with latent fingerprints.
ChemImage will use its experience from the design and fabrication of Raman Chemical Imaging (RCI) microscope systems to design the hardware, detection algorithms and operating software for the CFIS.
ChemImage Sensor Systems chief scientist and business director Matthew Nelson said: "The CFIS will be a significant addition to our product line of detection systems for explosive and drug residues.
"ChemImage Sensor Systems will now be a single supplier of detection systems for standoff, macroscopic and microscopic identification of threat residues in support of law enforcement activities."
ChemImage project manager Charles Gardner said: "ChemImage FALCON II raman chemical microscope systems enabled ECBC researchers to perform the proof of concept studies that made the contract feasible.
"We are pleased to have been selected to take the product development to the next level."
The contract value remains undisclosed and includes an option for the production of two CFIS units and participation in an extensive government qualification testing of the CFIS at ECBC.
The ability to identify specific drug or explosive particles with a specific person through the collocated fingerprint will reportedly provide valuable evidence to military and law enforcement agencies for the apprehension and conviction of terrorists and criminals.
Image: A US soldier fingerprints a detainee in Gavband village in Helmand province, Afghanistan. Photo: courtesy of the US Army.