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It's the exact sort of gadget you would assume the government already has in a garage somewhere: a big, black SUV that can detect the presence of radioactive material. But this modified Chevy Suburban XL, delivered to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) by Raytheon last month, claims to be the first of its kind: a highly-sensitive, self-contained system that uses the same spectroscopic analysis technology that's found in advanced cargo inspection scanners. Unlike those stationary Advanced Spectroscopic Portals—which are far from standard-issue for port authorities, due to their high cost—the SUV-based system can be repositioned quickly and used while the vehicle is in motion. In the past, authorities have had access to systems mounted in the back of pickup trucks, which were less accurate and much easier to spot during clandestine searches.
While we're likely still quite a ways away from having nuke detectors in every cellphone, the Department of Homeland Security is apparently at least making some progress in other somewhat portable options,