(University of Maryland) University of Maryland physicists have developed a powerful new method to detect radioactive material. By using an infrared laser beam to induce an electron avalanche breakdown near the material, the new technique can detect shielded material from a distance — improving upon current technologies that require close proximity to radioactive material. With additional engineering, the method could be scaled up to scan shipping containers at ports of entry, providing a powerful new tool for security applications.

Original source: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-03/uom-rmd032019.php