Here are the ten most read articles on this Identifying Threats blog during the past year. Over 40,000 people viewed our blog this year and read educational articles on public, work, general, and environmental safety and security. Take a look below and read the ones you missed.
1. What’s the Difference Between a Geiger Counter and a Personal Radiation Detector?
Personal radiation detectors offer the functionality of traditional Geiger counters, while delivering features not available in traditional Geiger counters. These lightweight instruments offer an improved range of detection of multiple types of ionizing radiation, even in the same unit – alpha, beta, x-rays, and gamma. They also feature different types of interfaces and a catalog of optional accessories for wireless reachback, rechargeable batteries, and extension poles to maintain good ALARA principles. Variations include units that can monitor dose rate, stay time, and peak values. Intrinsically safe options are available for users that may operate them in explosive environments. Read more >
2. Meet the DEA agents Who Took Down Pablo Escobar
Retired DEA Agents Stephen Murphy & Javier Pena who were instrumental in taking down notorious Colombian drug lord and narcoterrorist, Pablo Escobar — and whose story inspired the hit Netflix™ Series NARCOS™ — answered questions in our booth at a safety and security show. If you didn’t make it to the booth but want to learn more about the latest threat detection technology used in the field, we’ve gathered all our educational materials and consolidated them into one section in our website titled Solutions for Law Enforcement: Narcotics, Chemical and Radiation Threats. Read more >
3. What’s the Difference Between a Dirty Bomb and a Nuclear Bomb?
Usually, dirty bombs don’t release enough radiation to kill people or cause severe illness. That doesn’t mean that dirty bombs don’t do damage, though. The impact of the explosion itself can do lots of damage to humans and buildings. But the actual ‘dirty’ part of the bomb is the radioactive particles that are scattered as a result of the explosion. Read more >
4. Was that Fireworks or an Explosion?
There are plenty of articles about keeping crowds safe from accidental firecracker explosions and burning embers from the fireworks. But what about some of the more serious concerns, like improvised explosives, hazardous materials, and radiation sources that might be brought into the crowds. To detect any narcotics, explosives, or radiation within the crowds, some of these tools might be used. Read more >
5. Silica Can Be an Environmental and Health Threat
Silica is actually a common naturally occurring element found in sand and quartz. When silica-containing rocks and minerals are blasted, chipped, cut, ground, and drilled, small particles are released into the air, which can then be breathed in and land in workers’ lungs. Foundry workers are currently exposed to respirable crystalline silica. However, crystalline silica can be found in a many more industries. Workers around asphalt roofing materials, concrete products, cut stone, and clay products, especially in the railroad, shipyard, and oil and gas industries, can be exposed to this harmful silica. In fact, even workers in dental laboratories and jewelry manufacturing are exposed to RCS. Read more >
6. The Importance of Securing Nuclear Density Gauges
Density gauges are used to measure variations in the density of materials and are often found in the concrete, construction, oil and gas, petrochemical, chemical, food and beverage, and general process industries. There are high-performance non-intrusive, non-contact nuclear density gauges that can accurately measure the density or percent solids of a liquid or slurry in a pipe for any application that may involve a high temperature, highly toxic or highly corrosive process. This technology helps to ensure accurate process control and optimum productivity during mining processing, petrochemical transportation, coal operations, food processing, water treatment, dredging, and pulp and paper operations. Read more >
7. Reducing NH3 Slip in Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR)
Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) is one of a group of highly reactive gases known as oxides of nitrogen or nitrogen oxides (NOx) and it can be dangerous to one’s health. Because power plants are a major source of NO2, clean coal technologies and low NOx gas turbines are being developed to remove or reduce pollutant emissions into the atmosphere. These technologies control burn to minimize emissions of nitrogen oxides, as well as employ state-of-the-art air pollution control technology to scrub the remainder of the NOx out. Read more >
8. Do You Know The Difference Between HazMat and CBRNe? Does It Matter?
CBRNE is an acronym for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives. Although HazMat (Hazardous Materials) and CBRNE emergency response share certain common ground, there have always traditionally been some fundamental differences in terms of the focus, method and priorities of each approach. Read the article to learn of the implications of these factors for first responders. Read more >
9. Safety Precautions for Maintaining an NH3 (Ammonia) Analyzer
NH3 (ammonia) analyzers enable professionals to measure ammonia (NH3) concentrations in ambient air. NH3 can be hazardous to one’s health. Since usage and environmental conditions vary greatly, one should inspect the components frequently until an appropriate maintenance schedule is determined. Read more >
10. Using Spectroscopy Instruments at the Airport to Screen for Incoming Drugs
When one thinks of which safety and security agencies are helping to stop the trafficking of meth, heroin, opioids, fentanyl, and other narcotics that are impacting communities worldwide, the postal service does not usually come to mind. But U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at mail facilities are using spectroscopy devices — along with dogs trained to detect narcotics — as their latest weapon in stopping illegal drugs from getting into the country. Read more >