Choose the Density Meter CBP Agents Helped Design

Since interdiction officers use a density meter to locate possible hidden narcotics, they might as well choose a density meter that is designed with end-user input from US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers.

Patrick J. Campbell is the founder of Campbell/Harris Security Equipment Company (CSECO). He has over 35 years of experience, both designing and manufacturing, equipment that embodies the use of radioactive elements. In 1984 Campbell was asked by the federal government to develop a density meter that would enable them to detect hidden contraband. Campbell agreed, but said that he would be able to do so however, he asked to work with end-users, and they turned out team members from the CBP. The CBP officers gave their ideas in creating and enhancing user experience with what would be the world's first contraband detecting density meter, the Buster K910B.

There was about a six to eight-month testing period where CBP agents tested the equipment in the field. After the trials were complete, Buster passed all the tests from the CBP agents, it was released on the market, but only to law enforcement agencies.

Since the Buster first came out it has been used not only by CBP agents but also other law enforcement agencies across the country, including the Department of Homeland Security and the United States State Department. Although it has surpassed the expectations of the users in day-to-day searches for narcotics and contraband, CSECO has worked to make significant improvements to enhance the user’s experience. The Buster K910G Density Meter, the most current design is a reflection of some specific changes. These changes include:

  • Velcro has been added to the bottom of the Buster.
  • It has a more ergonomic design, with rounder edges to prevent scratching vehicles when used (the original design had sharp, rectangular corners).
  • The Buster has become much slimmer in the area where it is gripped to accommodate smaller hands (e.g., by female inspectors and agents) and hot, humid and sweaty conditions.
  • A strap has been added to the Buster to help users maintain a tight grip, thus preventing it from dropping.

The success of the Buster basically lies in its technology; The Buster beams a low-intensity gamma radiation and scintillation detector which enables it to quickly scan through many kinds of surfaces (wood, metal, reinforced plastic, concrete, and paper carton) without having to externally damage the surface. The Buster is able to detect discrepancies in density of the items being scanned. When the Buster picks up a high difference in density (usually twice the normal density of an object), it is indication contraband is hidden under that particular surface. The Buster provides two alarms in the form of an audible signal and visual readouts.

The low-intensity gamma radiation and scintillation detector technology also allows the Buster to perform quicker, more reliable and more accurate searches. The Buster takes four readings per second, allowing the agents to move the Buster along the surface quickly while keeping the same degree of accuracy. Using the Buster, the agents are able to quickly inspect one vehicle after another during stops.

The Buster can detect various types of hidden contraband like narcotics, drugs, cash, weapons, and explosives. It can also detect the presence of radiation. Technology called the Rad-Aware®, which allows inspection agents to positively identify the presence of abnormal quantities of radioactive materials such as dirty bombs. This helps them to establish safety zones and keep other agents and civilians out of harm's way.

How many density meters were designed with the input from law enforcement agencies? Only the Buster K910G Density Meter, which was designed with user input by US Customs and Border Protection. No wonder CBP agents recommend and use it! The Buster K910G Density Meter is fast, accurate, safe and user-friendly.

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Tony Harris, President and CEO, and Pat Campbell, founder, of CSECO explain about the Buster density meter and other contraband detectors.

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