A Florida-based startup dubbed SeaAway (no relation to Segway
, truth be told) is looking to make our ports a good bit safer
in the future by implementing an offshore screening process that could detect "chemical, biological, and nuclear traces as ships travel through." The aptly-dubbed Sea Sentinels would be anchored to the seafloor some 14-miles from a port, and will even house up to 15 humans and an array of unmanned aerial vehicles for extreme situations. The platforms would utilize RFID
readers to detect what types of cargo passed through its screen, and if sensors flag a suspicious container
, the Coast Guard is called into action. Unfortunately, the $100 million it costs to erect each
system would have to be subsidized by a passage fee of $20 per container, but tax breaks for shippers are currently be pondered. Nevertheless, a prototype system will see construction later this summer, and if all goes well, finalized versions could be patrolling our seas
in the not too distant future.