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Tech Wire 

Breath Sensors Reveal the Enemy Behind a Wall 


By Eric Beidel 

The art of hiding may become harder to master.

From California comes a sensor that could locate the enemy through a wall or find a comrade trapped under the rubble of a building.

Newport Beach-based TiaLinx Inc. has manufactured a device that could be used on the battlefield, after an earthquake, along the border or even underground. The Eagle5-N is a lightweight sensor that can detect and monitor breathing and movement behind walls. It can be carried by hand or mounted on a tripod or robot.

The company has designed similar technology before. With the more powerful Eagle5-N, though, “very, very minute motions can be detected,” founder and CEO Fred Mohamadi said.

In addition to breath detection, it can monitor a heartbeat and, by extension, the stress level of a person. It also can analyze the movement of a person’s rib cage. The Eagle5-N remotely uplinks the data it collects to a monitoring station.

While the device was designed to detect humans behind walls, it also makes sense for rescue missions or monitoring human trafficking at the border — above and underground, Mohamadi said.

“The whole philosophy is to save lives and protect the homeland,” he said.

Radar has been used to detect the motion of people, that’s nothing new. The Eagle5-N, though, compresses this power into a handheld device that uses a small amount of transmitted signals over a large frequency bandwidth.

So far, testing of the system has been limited to a laboratory setting, where it successfully monitored the breathing of a person in a car more than 35 feet away. It has also been able to detect human breath from about 10 feet behind a cinderblock wall.

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