Surveillance and Monitoring of Explosive, Chemical, Biological and Nuclear Hazards

Published - Oct 2003| Analyst - Auguste Carl| Code - SAS005A
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Report Highlights

  • The total worldwide market for NBC and explosives detection is estimated to be $1.2 billion in 2003. Rising at an AAGR (average annual growth rate) of 21.4%, thismarket is expected to reach nearly $3.2 billion in 2008.
  • ICAO regulations to be effective globally in 2006 will spur growth.
  • Following investment in 2002 of more than $1 billion, the 2003 market in the U.S. isestimated at $125 million, and is expected to climb to $143 million in 2008.
  • Expenditures in the U.S. in 2002 were designed to give U.S. airports 100% baggage screening capability.
  • Explosive detectors for aviation accounted for nearly 90% of the monies spent in 2002 and will continue to account for about 56% of the funds spent in 2008.
  • Developments include efficient, low-cost nuclear radiation and biological agent detectors that make these technologies practical for use in numerous applications.


Since the attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, the demand for systems capable of providing early warning of a nuclear, biological, chemical and explosive (NBC and explosive) attack has surged to an all time high. In addition, national governments, especially the U.S. government, have greatly increased money to be spent on research and development for new and improved technologies. In an effort to respond to the momentous increase in requirements for NBC and explosive monitoring devices, private industry as well as nonprofit research institutions in the U.S. and the rest of the world are gearing up to serve this expanding market.

NBC and explosive detectors now are a part of the many security devices used to conduct law enforcement activity in the industrialized world. They also are used as indicators for early warning information on nuclear, biological and chemical attacks on the battlefield, and involve many different technologies, ranging from sample dosimer portable radiation detectors to complex photoacoustic infrared spectroscopy sensor devices. New miniature technologies that allow development of hand-held NBC and explosive detector devices, have made protecting populations in major metropolitan areas, monitoring critical road infrastructures, and surveilling major transportation hubs even more feasible.

This important BCC report details current NBC detectors and new emerging technologies. It presents a comprehensive analysis of the current NBC surveillance technologies market and its future direction. The industry is examined on a worldwide basis, both from a manufacturing and demand point of view. BCC originally examined the NBC weapons detector industry in 2000. With the pace of current changes, an update is in order.


The report provides coverage of:


  • Each current NBC detector technology type and applications
  • The role that detection technologies play in industrial and battlefield monitoring
  • The increased use of NBC weapons detection devices by law enforcement and emergency response entities
  • The expanded use of explosive detectors in aviation security
  • The impact on the instrumentation industry
  • Current shipments of detectors in three major market sectors
  • Unit shipment forecasts through 2008.



BCC presents an analysis, by each NBC detector technology type, of the number of detectors shipped in 2003. Our estimated value is what buying entities have paid in undepreciated dollars. Then, based on our surveys, we analyze the potential applications for each technology, and forecast unit shipments for 2003 and 2008. We also analyze NBC detector shipments by three major market sectors that use NBC detector technology. Also, all tables and figures are calculated in 2002 constant U.S. dollars.


BCC surveyed U.S. government agencies industry trade association and international organizations to obtain data for this study. We also spoke with manufacturers of various NBC detector technology types in the United States. In addition, we compiled data from current financial and trade information sources.


Research analyst Carlet Auguste is experienced in the assessment of technology performance, in particular, systems having potential aerospace applications. Throughout his career Mr. Auguste has conducted technology appraisals for U.S. government agencies having jurisdiction over national security and aviation, in addition to performing technology assessments for organizations operating in the private sector. Mr. Auguste has been with BCC for one year. B.S., Ohio State University, M.S. Aerospace Engineering, George Washington University.

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