Home Page Link Contact Us Link Site Map link

Revolutionary Forensic Device Sold Abroad Earns Thousands for Force

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Created by Dr John Bond, ‘CERA’ (Cartridge Electrostatic Recovery and Analysis) is a pioneering forensic machine that is able to reveal hidden fingerprints on metal in 360 degree image form, thus paving the way for investigations, such as those involving gun shell casings.

Originally developed within Northamptonshire Police by Mr Bond, the police authority granted a licence to Consolite Forensic, a division of Consolite Technology who intend to exploit the world’s new forensic science technologies, to enable the company to manufacture ‘CERA’ and sell the product worldwide.

Now the machine has been sold abroad for the first time in the United States, earning thousands of pounds for the police authority’s funds. Northamptonshire Police confirmed they have received ‘several thousand’ in royalties. The plans for further aboard sales are believed to now include China and other Far East countries.

Nonetheless, as UK wide police forces take budget cuts, it seems the hefty price for this specialist piece of equipment is preventing local purchases. The machine sold for around $50,000 in the USA, which although is not unexpected for such a specialist machine, is still above local budgets.

Volunteering for the force, Mr Bond has high hopes for the future of similar forensic machinery, declaring ‘CERA’ has:

“Proved a gateway to further development to taking fingerprints from surfaces exposed to extreme heat (shell casing), waterlogging (say a weapon which has been down a drain) and everyday items such as thermal paper, till receipts and cashpoint ATM surrounds.”

For those interested in the science behind ‘CERA’, the technique is as followed: High volt currents are passed through the metal before ceramic beads coated in a fine powder are added to the surface. Then the powder reacts with the corrosion on the metal left behind from the fingerprint. Even if attempts are made to wipe off fingerprints, the original fingerprint pattern will still be revealed.