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Varian releases X-ray tube to find contraband, weapons

by Brendon Nafziger, DOTmed News Associate Editor | September 10, 2010
Best known for its radiotherapy systems to fight cancers, Varian Medical Systems Inc. is moving further into the security space with a new X-ray tube designed to detect dangers in military installations, airports and other potential targets.

"The new tube provides the security industry with a customized yet cost-effective X-ray tube that can be used to develop systems that expose threats and contraband items that may be concealed on a person's body or within a parcel," industrial and security X-ray product manager Jim Kone said in prepared remarks.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company said Tuesday the MCS-80 tube can help detect non-metallic items like ceramic weapons, plastic explosives, drugs and dangerous liquids. The tube operates at 80 KV and features air-cooled stationary anode metal ceramic design, the company said.

The tube is available to purchase now. The manufacturing headquarters for Varian's X-ray products is in Salt Lake City.