LONDON – A sensor that can scan huge crowds and pick out a lone suicide bomber by homing in on hidden explosives has undergone official tests, The Sun reported Thursday.
The revolutionary gadget -- similar to airport scanners but top secret -- is believed to silently analyze materials using the unique "terahertz" waves emitted by different substances.
British government scientists began testing it a year ago on mock crowds where one person in every 75 carried a "Person-Borne Improvised Explosive Device."
Heavily-censored reports obtained by the newspaper in a freedom of information request reveal other trials saw the guinea pigs armed with "handguns and knives."
Real terrorists would have no idea they had been scanned from a distance -- and could be intercepted before causing mayhem.
The futuristic device -- officially known as a "stand-off imaging system" -- could be used to protect Al Qaeda targets such as rail stations, shopping malls and sporting events.
The device is thought to be sophisticated enough to differentiate between plastic explosive and plasticine.
British government sources have not ruled out the system being in place at the London Olympics.
The Home Office said, "Protecting the public is our number one priority. We regularly test new technologies to help us face the ongoing terrorist threat."