The Hach Company has announced that its Homeland Security Technology unit is in the final stages of testing. This new technology is designed to detect terrorist attacks on water distribution systems.
Hach has signed a cooperative research and development agreement with the United States Army. The Army's Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC) and the Corps of Engineer's Construction Engineering Research Laboratory will work with Hach to conduct live-agent testing in secure government laboratories.
"We're in the final stages of verifying the world's first working, reliable real-time detection technology capable of discovering adverse attacks and managing the quality of drinking water," commented Jeff Throckmorton, Ph.D., president of Hach Homeland Security Technology. "We're proud to be the first to create this homeland security solution."
Based on the Hach Event Monitor Trigger System, the new technology uses smart instrumentation and advanced interpretation techniques to detect the presence of water contaminants or poisons.
A secondary benefit is that it allows drinking water providers to manage water condition and quality on an ongoing basis. Pending successful verification testing and receiving necessary Federal liability protections, the new technology is scheduled for commercial release in 2005.
Under terms of its cooperative research and development agreement, Hach is paying to test its detection/response system at the Aberdeen Proving Ground, one of the few sites in the country where chemical and biological agent testing can legally take place. Aberdeen is part of ECBC.
The Army and Hach will construct real-time drinking water systems in secure laboratories using strict environmental and safety procedures.
In addition, the Corps of Engineers is conducting parallel studies with Hach to better understand the dynamics of chemical transport. This information will allow the corps to better understand and monitor water distribution systems and predict the impact of terrorist attacks on those systems.
Hach Company is based in Colorado and Iowa, and is the World's largest water and wastewater instrumentation manufacturer. A part of the Danaher Corporation, Hach manufactures and markets over 3,000 products for water analysis in drinking water, wastewater and industrial applications.