March 21, 2006 06:09 ET

Ahura FirstDefender™ Handheld Chemical ID System Now Listed on the Responder Knowledge Base

May Be Eligible for Grant Funding Under Several DHS Programs

WILMINGTON, MA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 21, 2006 -- Ahura Corporation's FirstDefender is now listed on the Responder Knowledge Base (RKB), a DHS-funded website designed to support the emergency responder community. The FirstDefender uses Raman infrared detection technology for instantaneous identification of unknown solids and liquids, which is a critical part of today's emergency response preparedness.

The FirstDefender has also been linked to the Standardized Equipment List (SEL). The SEL is issued annually to promote interoperability and standardization across the response community at the local, state, and federal levels by offering a standard reference and a common set of terminology. It is provided to the responder community by the InterAgency Board for Equipment Standardization and Interoperability (IAB). The SEL contains a list of generic equipment recommended by the IAB to local, state, and federal government organizations in preparing for and responding to Terrorist Incidents and Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Events. Linkage to the SEL indicates that the FirstDefender fits the operational description of at least one of these key items.

The FY2006 Authorized Equipment List (AEL) used by the Department of Homeland Security's Office of Grants and Training (G&T) also contains an item under which the FirstDefender may qualify for purchase using grant funds. This item applies to the following major grant programs:

--  State Homeland Security Program
--  Urban Areas Security Initiative
--  Metropolitan Medical Response System (MMRS)
--  Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI)
--  Transit Security Grant Program (TSGP)
--  Port Security Grant Program (PSGP)
--  Intercity Bus Security Grant Program (IBSGP)
Allowability of specific products under these grant programs is determined by each State Administrative Agency and appropriate DHS G&T Preparedness Officer. Detailed information about the FirstDefender, the SEL, and the AEL is available on the Responder Knowledge Base at

FirstDefender is a rugged handheld Raman instrument used for the instantaneous identification of unknown liquids and solids. It is designed to the rigorous requirements of the military and optimized to the needs of civilian first responders. The FirstDefender Handheld Chemical Identification System is being used across America by police and fire departments every day. Its portability and ruggedness make it ideal for on-site applications including: forensics, narcotics, hazardous materials and "white powders." The vast library of substances and mixture analysis capability enable FirstDefender to accurately identify billions of combinations of materials, making it ideal for "real world" situations.

About Ahura -- Ahura Corporation has developed award-winning technology and is leading the realization of portable optical systems for homeland security, life sciences, industrial, and communications markets. Ahura's OpticalEngine technology offers superior performance at disruptive prices. The company is collaborating with OEM customers and government agencies on medical, industrial and security applications. Visit

About The Responder Knowledge Base (RKB) -- Sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security Office of Domestic Preparedness, and the National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism, The Responder Knowledge Base has been designed to provide emergency responders with a single source for integrated information on current equipment, including organizing lists such as the InterAgency Board's Standard Equipment List and Authorized Equipment List. The RKB also adds value through knowledge links and has become the "go-to" site for the responder community

Contact Information

  • Contacts:
    Donald O. Hewitt
    Program Manager
    Terrorism Research Center/RKB
    5756-F Burke Centre Parkway - PMB 331
    Burke, VA 22015
    P: (703) 790-7212
    F: (703) 790-0755
    M: (703) 395-7212
    E: Email Contact

    Eric Schmidt
    Vice President, Business Development
    Ahura Corporation
    46 Jonspin Road
    Wilmington, MA 01887
    +1 978 642 1120 - Direct
    Email Contact