CRIM-TRACK: Sensor System for Detection of Criminal Chemical Substances

Jens Kristian Munk, Ole Thomsen Buus, Jan Larsen, Eleftheria Dossi, Sol Tatlow, Lina Lässig, Lars Sandström, Mogens Havsteen Jakobsen

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Detection of illegal compounds requires a reliable, selective and sensitive detection device. The successful device features automated target acquisition, identification and signal processing. It is portable, fast, user friendly, sensitive, specific, and cost efficient. LEAs are in need of such technology. CRIM-TRACK is developing a sensing device based on these requirements. We engage highly skilled specialists from research institutions, industry, SMEs and LEAs and rely on a team of end users to benefit maximally from our prototypes. Currently we can detect minute quantities of drugs, explosives and precursors thereof in laboratory settings. Using colorimetric technology we have developed prototypes that employ disposable sensing chips. Ease of operation and intuitive sensor response are highly prioritized features that we implement as we gather data to feed into machine learning. With machine learning our ability to detect threat compounds amidst harmless substances improves. Different end users prefer their equipment optimized for their specific field. In an explosives-detecting scenario, the end user may prefer false positives over false negatives, while the opposite may be true in a drug-detecting scenario. Such decisions will be programmed to match user preference. Sensor output can be as detailed as the sensor allows. The user can be informed of the statistics behind the detection, identities of all detected substances, and quantities thereof. The response can also be simplified to “yes” vs. “no”. The technology under development in CRIM-TRACK will provide custom officers, police and other authorities with an effective tool to control trafficking of illegal drugs and drug precursors.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOptics and Photonics for Counterterrorism, Crime Fighting, and Defence XI; and Optical Materials and Biomaterials in Security and Defence Systems Technology XII
PublisherSPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication date2015
Article number965208
ISBN (Print)9781628418620
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventSPIE Security + Defence 2015 - Centre de Congrès Pierre Baudis, Toulouse, France
Duration: 21 Sept 201524 Sept 2015


ConferenceSPIE Security + Defence 2015
LocationCentre de Congrès Pierre Baudis
OtherCo-located with SPIE Remote Sensing.
Internet address
SeriesProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2015 Society of Photo Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic electronic or print reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.


  • Trace vapor sensing
  • Drugs
  • Explosives
  • Precursors
  • Colorimetry
  • Optics
  • Disposable Chip
  • User friendly


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