North Carolina Patent of the Month – February 2023

Detecting and preventing explosives is a crucial task that requires efficient and effective technology. However, current systems and devices for detecting explosives have several drawbacks and limitations. They may be bulky, heavy, not easily portable, complex, and costly. Moreover, they may be limited in the types of substances they can detect, which may require different detection systems for different types of explosives.

Vadum Inc. addresses these limitations with their recently patented magnetic resonance detection (MRD) system. Vadum’s MRD system is a nuclear quadrupole resonance (NQR) detection system that provides multi-frequency operation for substantially full coverage of the explosive NQR spectrum. This is achieved through a broadband transmit/receive (T/R) switch and a single multi-frequency radio frequency (RF) transducer. The MRD system is frequency-agile and can operate over a wide band of frequencies or wavelengths.

The MRD system has several advantages over current explosives detection systems. For example, it is portable, which means it can be easily used in the field. It is also capable of detecting a wide range of explosives, which eliminates the need for multiple detection systems. Additionally, the MRD system is not limited to detecting explosives on the surface but can also detect explosives buried in the ground.

Vadum’s features and benefits are made possible by the unique design which combines a range of circuits including a frequency-tunable transducer circuit, a transmit/receive switch circuit, a transmitter circuit, a digital quadrature receiver circuit, and a tunable frequency source. A controller circuit controls the emission of a series of radio-frequency (RF) pulses from the coil and measures nuclear quadrupole resonance (NQR) responses after each RF pulse. The controller circuit also estimates longitudinal relaxation time and/or transverse relaxation time for responses corresponding to at least one RF pulse frequency.

Vadum’s MRD system offers an innovative and effective solution to detecting and preventing explosives. Its frequency-agile, multi-frequency operation, and portability make it a valuable tool for military and security applications. With its ability to detect a wide range of explosives, including those buried in the ground, it is a game-changer in the field of explosives detection and has the potential to make the world a safer place.

Vadum is a proven leader in the defense industry providing complete RF and microwave solutions for all branches of the military. Specializing in custom measurement instruments, characterization systems and man/vehicle portable platforms, Vadum has a reputation based on solid design practices and many years of RF, microwave, and complex digital design experience.

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