Lightsense is providing analytical tools to detect illicit drugs with high accuracy and sensitivity. The first product is a methamphetamine detector (scanner) that can detect powder or crystalline forms of methamphetamine on almost any surface, including skin, clothing, plastics, wood, masonry and metals.
A unique feature of the Lightsense methamphetamine scanner is its ability to accurately detect methamphetamine in mixtures of other substances, often used as disguise, at concentrations down to less than 1%, far beyond the capabilities of any competing spectroscopic technique.
The Lightsense methamphetamine scanner has successfully gone through a series of critical tests by federal and local law enforcement agencies and is expected to be an important tool for narcotics divisions of federal, state and local law enforcement.
The handheld device is the size of a smartphone and can be carried and concealed easily, giving law enforcement officers an advantage in combating drug crime. The test results are instantaneous and non-destructive and can be conducted without touching or disturbing the surfaces scanned, including scanning through plastic bags, plastic wrap and wax paper. The ease of use and its ruggedness––it can be dropped onto a hard surface from 6 feet without incurring damage––makes it extremely valuable for use in the field.
The detection of other drugs, including fentanyl, cocaine, and heroin, will be addressed with additional instruments currently in development, and will be released later in 2020.
Methamphetamine when smoked or produced leaves a long-lasting residue on walls and furniture that is hazardous to occupants, in particular children and pets prone to lick surfaces.
Lightsense meth detectors have successfully been used to detect trace quantities of the drug in homes, cars and RV’s and in commercial buildings including hotels, making the detector a valuable tool for building inspection. The ability to get an instant reading on the presence of methamphetamine avoids the expense and time of sending samples to remote laboratories.
The handheld illicit drug detector products are based on Lightsense’s patented advanced optical detection technology and provide unique solutions to the challenges of identifying chemical substances in critical environments. The Lightsense spectrometer platform is based on Photoemission Reflection Spectroscopy wherein light energy at a preset wavelength interrogates the substance of interest and produces a spectral response recorded by the instrument detector. The unique return emission spectrum is captured and compared to a predetermined signature, which can be stored in the instrument or available in a proprietary Cloud database.