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DARPA Unveils Gamma Ray Inspection Tech Project

Jeff Brody

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency plans to develop a tunable gamma ray technology to accommodate industrial, medical and national security usage. The agency intends to integrate tunable, high-intensity and narrow-bandwidth sources of gamma ray energy through a portable form factor device to help detect specific elements as part of the Gamma Ray Inspection Technology program, DARPA said Friday.

DARPA noted that the proposed system will stimulate the nucleus of an atom to cause a nuclear resonance fluorescence, an effect that will create a unique identifier to each isotope in the periodic table.

“With GRIT, you could probe and detect specific isotopes of interest by fine-tuning the photon energy to minimize background noise and take advantage of the nuclear resonance fluorescence phenomenon,” said Mark Wrobel, a program manager at DARPA's defense sciences office.

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