Raytheon has been awarded a three-phase contract by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to develop a system to detect radiation at very great distances.

The stand-off radiation detection system (SORDS) contract is an eight-month contract for $2.3m managed by DHS’s Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO); it includes the construction of a prototype. This is the third of a four-phase development programme worth a potential $9.9m if all four options are exercised.

Vice president of engineering for Raytheon Integrated Defence Systems, Michael Del Checcolo said that the system would greatly improve homeland security.

“The purpose of SORDS is to develop an advanced nuclear sensor that can determine the type and location of radiation sources at much greater distances than current systems,” said Del Checcolo.

In developing a reliable and affordable SORDS solution for DHS, Raytheon is teaming with experts from Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM; Bubble Technology Industries, Chalk River, Ontario; Radiation Monitoring Devices, Watertown, Mass.; Draper Laboratory, Cambridge, Mass.; MIT, Cambridge, Mass. and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich.

Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems is a leader in global capabilities integration providing affordable, integrated solutions to a broad international and domestic customer base, including the US Missile Defense Agency, the US Armed Forces and the Department of Homeland Security.

By Daniel Garrun.