Plymouth Rock Technologies Inc (CNSX:PRT) Threat Detection Developer Creates Shoe Scanning Technology
Plymouth Rock Technologies Inc (CNSX:PRT) (FRA:4XA) is a security screening technology developer. CEO Dana Wheeler provides an introduction to the company and states that Plymouth Rock’s goal is to develop radar and imaging processor systems to counteract active threat situations. The company is developing these technologies to respond to threats at greater distances, which potentially minimizes risk to innocent bystanders. Plymouth Rock has developed a shoe scanning technology for airports, which is designed to provide threat assessment and speed up security checks. Plymouth Rock’s technology can be both portable and fixed; as a result, it also has military applications and could be used for additional security in forward operating areas. Plymouth Rock has already raised $3 million and Wheeler anticipates needing to raise an additional $5 to $8 million for the company to produce its initial product offerings.
James West: Welcome back. I’m joined now by CEO of Plymouth Rock Technologies, Dana Wheeler. Rock trades on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the symbol PRT. Dana, welcome.
Dana Wheeler: Thank you.
James West: Dana, quick overview: what is Plymouth Rock Technologies all about?
Dana Wheeler: We actually are developing fairly novel threat detection systems.
James West: Okay. What kind of threats, and what kind of environments?
Dana Wheeler: A couple of different threats, threats for military threats, threats for people at checkpoints, coming into forward operating bases, looking for suicide bombers, looking for hidden weapons underneath clothing, knives, drugs, a lot of different. We’re trying to screen Covertly so people really don’t know we’re screening them; that type of thing.
James West: Okay, and what is the essence of the technology? What kind of technology is it?
Dana Wheeler: So we’re using microwave and millimetre wave technology, which is frequency spectrums below visible light, fairly small wavelengths, so we can penetrate clothing and we can see objects underneath using imaging techniques.
James West: So would this be comparable to, for example, a Patriot One technology that does this sort of tag and follow and technology where they detect it using microwave technology?
Dana Wheeler: It would be a comparable technology, but there are some differences in that we have longer stand-off distances. So there, you have to walk through a wall, both sides of the wall kind of scanning you, it’s close proximity; where we’re trying to do something at more of a stand off distance, so in the case of a suicide bomber walking into a crowd or walking through a portal, it’s almost too late when they’re walking that far, you know, into the crowds or into the gate at a portal at an airport, for example. Whereas we’re trying to get them as they’re coming out of parking lots, going into the venue, whether it be an entertainment venue, sporting events, that type of thing.
James West: Interesting. At what stage of commercialization is your technology at currently?
Dana Wheeler: Well, we have three different technologies we’re looking at that all serve different purposes. We have a shoe scanner technology for obvious reasons, to try to get throughput through the airports and detect impactions in people’s shoes; now, in most airports in the world as you know, you have to take your shoes off, so it slows down the line. So we’re trying to put together, we actually have some technology, we have some intellectual property, that you stand on a certain area and it will image the bottom of your shoes and basically we’ll have some algorithms written whether the image is a good shoe r whether there’s been something done to the heel of the shoe.
James West: A bad shoe.
Dana Wheeler: A bad show. Well, it’s funny you say that, because, you know, we also have commercial opportunities to work with show manufacturers to see if their shoes are being made properly also by taking a good shoe signature and then a bad shoe signature. A lot of that happens visually or by cutting the shoe apart, and then they sell them as seconds.
James West: Interesting. Okay, so what is the sort of public facing most or the earliest sort of venue that we’re going to see this technology at work in public.
Dana Wheeler: I think the shoe scan is probably the head of the crowd because we’ve done a lot of academic work there. We’ve done all the research, so now it’s more of a development program. More commercialization of making the apparatus fit into a certain area; more mechanical engineering, so to speak. So I think that’s going to be the first one that we’re going to see out in public doing demonstrations with some of the big companies that already provide screening techniques; for example, the L3 screening provision machine that’s in airports today that you have you to through the portal, stand there for a couple of seconds. You know, we can envision our shoe scanner being in that portal where you step on the yellow feet so your shoes will be scanned at the same time your body is being scanned.
James West: Interesting. Coincidental that I just went through that process on Tuesday, and you know, I walked through the scanner and the guy said ‘you gotta take our shoes off’. Which I thought that was what this whole thing was able, you know, so I didn’t have to –
Dana Wheeler: Yeah, you know, actually, we just talked to some folks that they didn’t realize that either. That type of scanner basically puts a cylinder around your body, but it’s not looking up at your shoes. Even the tops of your shoes, very difficult to make a detection there.
James West: Interesting. Okay, then, how much money have you guys raised so far? How much are you going to need before you get to profitability?
Dana Wheeler: We’ve raised about $3 million to date, and we feel we’re going to need another $5 million to $8 million before we can actually start producing these in some low quantity volumes, that we’ll call low-rate initial production. And that’s going to take, well, that’ll be into 2020.
James West: Okay, great. Is this something that some of the larger defense contractors would have an interest in taking over?
Dana Wheeler: Absolutely. That’s one of our objectives. I’ve had other companies that we’ve done other types of security products directly with the military for protecting forward operating bases and standoff distances, checkpoints, for special operations, mobile special operations where they set up checkpoints at different areas, so we see them adopting it fairly quickly because the technology fairly novel and it’s working, and it’s working very well.
James West: Do you have a sense of how much it’s going to cost per detection location for a buyer of the system?
Dana Wheeler: I kind of have an idea where it’s going to – we have to get the whole system through its user interface and everything, and well below $50,000.
James West: Well below 50,000. Okay. Now, is this something that is portable, or is it a fixed, stationary item?
Dana Wheeler: It can be both. It can be pull-out-able, and one of our technologies, we’re actually mounting a millimetre wave imaging system that will scan people on a drone.
James West: Oh, wow.
Dana Wheeler: So we’re going to fly the drone above unstructured crowds, and make detections with video cues on who has, for example, suicide bombs or any weapons on their body.
James West: Wow, very interesting. Okay, that’s great, Dana, very interesting technology and certainly we’ve seen those have success in the past in the marketplace. So we’ll continue to follow the story; thanks very much for joining me today.
Dana Wheeler: Oh, excellent. Thank you very much.
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