March 10,

A CAMERA that can detect weapons, drugs or explosives hidden under people's clothes from up to 25m away could be a breakthrough for the security industry.

The T5000 camera uses what it calls "passive imaging technology" to identify objects by natural electromagnetic rays – known as Terahertz or T-rays – that they emit.

The high-powered camera, developed by British company ThruVision, can detect hidden objects from up to 25m away and is effective even when people are moving.

It does not reveal physical body details and the screening is harmless, the company says.

The technology, which has military and civilian applications and could be used in crowded airports, shopping malls or sporting events, will be unveiled at a scientific development exhibition sponsored by Britain's Home Office on March 12-13.

"Acts of terrorism have shaken the world in recent years and security precautions have been tightened globally," said Clive Beattie, the chief executive of ThruVision.

"The ability to see both metallic and non-metallic items on people out to 25m is certainly a key capability that will enhance any comprehensive security system."

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photo: ThruVision ... the T5000 can detect objects through clothing by identifying electromagnetic "T-rays" /