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When you go to the airport, do you feel comfortable getting an enhanced pat-down? What about an enhanced rat-down? Israeli scientists say they have found a way to harness the power of mice to bolster airport security. Brothers Eran and Alon Lumbroso have constructed an explosive detector that looks like a standard airport metal detector or full-body scanner -- only it's filled with mice, according to New Scientist.
The mouse trap contains three canisters, each filled with eight specially trained mice capable of picking up faint traces of explosive residues. When passengers tainted with possible explosive chemicals walk through the arch, the mice reportedly flee to a secondary compartment, setting off an alarm. "It's as if they're smelling a cat and escaping," said Eran, one of the co-founders of BioExplorers -- the company that manufactures the device. "We detect the escape."
The device was tested last year on 1,000 shoppers in a Tel Aviv shopping mall when the mice successfully picked out 22 people carrying mock explosives. The idea may be appealing to airport authorities who feel that body scanners invade customers privacy.