- Patents filed by an Israeli inventor Amit Weisman and US company Yardeni Associates of Connecticut make scary reading for nervous travellers.
Airport security guards already use hand-held electromagnetic wands to detect metal hidden under clothing. The same wand can also sniff for traces of the gases some explosives emit into the air.
If the passenger is a suicide bomber who realises the wand has found something, the guard might not have enough time to pull out handcuffs or a gun. So the new wand will have a hidden secret â€“ a transformer which steps the detectorâ€™s battery power up to 100 kilovolts and feeds it to disguised metal electrodes at the end of the wand.
If the wand gives a silent warning of explosives, the guard can then subtly slide the pads onto the passengerâ€™s neck or hands and press a shock button. The patent reassures that the effect is â€temporary and reversibleâ€.
Somehow, I do not want to see these in the hands of some of the airport security people I've experienced.