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Article: High Tech Magazine

Smart Gun Development Promises to Save American Lives

Reinforcing the ability to fully customize their Tactilus® line of electronic pressure measurement systems, Sensor Products Inc has developed a unique sensor specifically for the New Jersey Institute of Technology�s highly publicized Smart Gun project. Utilizing a resistive architecture, this newly designed system is the front-runner among other candidate technologies such as magnetic rings, transponders, combination locks and fingerprint recognition devices.

The urgency of the completion of this project is self-explanatory. Since 2000, when NJIT ventured to develop this technology with the aid of government funding, 24 children and adults have been killed in 15 separate school shootings. Fortunately, engineers at NJIT see the advantages of the Tactilus® sensor system being used on firearms to determine the grip of authorized users and are making great strides to finish this mass producible prototype by early 2006. In fact, Sensor Products recently delivered the second generation of their Tactilus® Smart Gun sensor to NJIT. Find out more at

Not only are the individual sensing points of this new Tactilus® system a mere 0.2 millimeters thick in order to prevent any compromise of a firearm�s integrity, but are still accurate even when the user wears gloves. Additionally, the system possesses electronics that can be miniaturized to fit into the handle along with the magazine by utilizing lithium ion batteries like ones found in PDA�s and cell phones.

To get a product of this magnitude off the ground, we essentially partner with our customers in this case the engineers at NJIT, said Jeffrey Stark, senior technical manager at Sensor Products. This project is crucial for the safety of today�s society and we will work tirelessly at being creative and flexible in our designs and will provide resolution to difficult problems that may arise in the development process.

With a velocity of up to 1,000 Hz, the embedded sensors in Tactilus® can generate pressure readings with unprecedented speed and accuracy. Its thin and highly flexible substrate material allows for easy conformability to curvaceous surfaces such as the grip of a handgun. These inherent traits make Tactilus® ideal for conforming around the handle of a firearm to provide the most thorough and accurate pressure readings possible. These robust sensors can last thousands of uses with consistent repeatability and are highly resistant to electromagnetic noise, temperature and humidity fluctuations.

The Tactilus® systems collect pressure data and send an analog signal back to an intermediary data hub where it is converted to a digital signal. This signal contains the collected data and is subsequently sent to an interface (software) designed for easy viewing and dynamic analysis. Tactilus® Windows®-based software provides 2-D and 3-D imaging, isobar and region-of-interest viewing, longitudinal and latitudinal analysis, graphical displays of data in bar charts, pressure vs. time, linescans and histograms, statistical analysis of average, minimum and maximum pressures, total force over any selected area and more. This data may also be exported to virtually any third party software.