published Sunday, September 15th, 2013

High-tech underwater device fishes for contraband

HOUSTON — It may look like a fish and move like one, but the innovative BIOSwimmer could prove far more useful in the fight against drug-runners and even terrorists.

The 90-pound, 5-foot-long high-tech device is the result of a collaboration between the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and a Massachusetts technology firm. The Houston Chronicle reports it will be on display later this year in the Port of Houston for potential buyers.

BIOSwimmer has sonar and camera gear that allows it to detect protrusions on a ship's bottom. Traffickers have used the bottom of ships to smuggle drugs and the concern is that this may become a common practice with weapons.

The device has its own internal power pack and is unfettered by a power cord tethered to it.

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