Covert Gear II - The Wide Wide World of Sensor Systems

The devices described here find widespread use in habitat surveillance systems.

This portable skullcap extrudes ultra-sensitive nanoelectrodes into the scalp, then plays media to the subject via a visor and ear plugs. It takes approximately 5 minutes to thoroughly scan a subject’s brain patterns in response to the media, producing a verifiable brainprint which can then be authenticated against a meshed database entry. [Moderate]

This camera system is composed of multilayered semiconducting polymer fabrics that perceive visual wavelengths much like a standard camera, only without the lens. This allows cameras to be built into clothing, drapes, carpets, etc. These camera systems lack lenses and so are immune to dazzlers, lens spotters, and similar systems. [Moderate]

Similar to the fiber eye surveillance camera, the fiberoptic mic is a flexible and mesh-controllable length of fiberoptic cable that can fit through cracks, small holes, etc. This device measures the laser reflections off of a sound-sensitive reflective diaphragm, recording audio that is transmitted back through the fiberoptic cable. Unlike standard microphones, fiberoptic mics are not effected by environmental heat, moisture, or magnetic fields. They have effective noise-canceling functions, high fidelity, and can record infrasound and ultrasound. Apply a +10 modifier to hearing-based Perception Tests. Fiberoptic mics are sometimes strung throughout habitat infrastructure to monitor seismic vibrations in walls and other surfaces.[Low]

Flat cameras rely on an array of tiny, networked micro-lensed imagers. With no large lens, these systems are flat and so are easily mounted on walls, ceilings, shell exteriors, and other surfaces. They are difficult (-20 modifier) to visually spot, but are detectable with lens spotter systems. Flat cameras are available in standard visual, infrared, and ultraviolet wavelengths, or a pricier hyperspectral model. [Moderate; High for hyperspectral]

Ghost imagers are special camera systems that rely on a paradoxical effect to construct images of objects that conventional cameras cannot see, such as targets obstructed by smoke, clouds, or other visual effects. Ghost imagers rely on two cameras. The first is pointed at a light source and the second at a target object or location illuminated by that source (but obstructed from the standard camera view). By exploiting a (quantum) correlation effect in the property of light, the ghost imaging system can build an image of the target based on photons that are scattered off of it, even though the view of the target is obstructed. Ghost imaging could thus be used to see targets on a battlefield obscured by heavy fog or smoke or on a planet surface below heavy cloud cover, simply by pointing a camera that way and another at the sun, moon, or other light source. In game terms, ghost imagers ignore all visual modifiers. Ghost imagers can see in infrared as well as standard visual frequencies. Though they are passive sensors that use natural light, they can also be used in conjunction with active light sources. [High]

A hyperspectral imager views the electromagnetic spectrum much like enhanced vision bioware. The passive model perceives infrared to ultraviolet frequencies, while the active model incorporates terahertz and radar imaging as well. See the rules for hyperspectral sensors, p. 162. [Moderate for Passive, High for Active]

A hyperspectral mic hears the entire audio spectrum, from infrasonic to ultrasonic frequencies, much like enhanced hearing bioware. See the rules for hyperspectral sensors, p. 162. [Moderate]

This small hand-held device is used to read the nanotat IDs carried by most morphs (p. 279, EP). It scans the nanobots, decodes the data, and compares the information against linked online databases. To truly be effective, this device must have mesh access to ID databases. [Low]

Metal detectors use very-low frequency induction to detect metals that are not apparent. They can be used at security checkpoints to locate weapons, cyberware, or contraband. Available as hand-held wands, they are also often used as portal access systems, scanning anyone that passes through. Modern detectors are good enough to identify the type of metal. Gatecrashers and scavengers also use them to locate items buried in the ground or under debris. These devices have a very short range, just 2 meters, though larger masses of metal may be detectable from further away. [Low]

Modern motion detectors use a combination of sensor technologies to maximize accuracy and reduce false alarms. They can operate in passive and active modes. In passive mode, the detector relies on infrared sensors to detect body heat, without sending out any signals that might betray its presence. In active mode, it sends out ultrasonic pulses and/or microwaves, measuring the reflections that bounce off a moving target to measure speed, position, and direction. Often strategically mounted as a perimeter security system, motion detectors are typically set in passive mode first, which then triggers active mode when it gets a reading. These devices are small. [Low]

These mini-sized combo sensors are worn on the body and use an infrared heat sensor, biolidar pulse rate measurement, pheromone and perspiration identification, and a camera and microphone to scan those with whom the wearer interacts. The sensor’s AI measures the readings and also applies voice analysis (stress factor and response spaces) and kinesics assessments to judge the honesty and forthrightness of a conversational partner. While originally designed for business and political negotiations, PI sensors are growing in popularity as a tool for regular personal interactions. The AI is equipped with Kinesics and Perception skills of 40. They apply a +20 modifier to Kinesics Tests. [Moderate]

These fullerene devices acts as both high-resolution display and camera. They can be painted on almost any surface. Because they do not have lenses, they cannot be detected by lens spotter systems. When not displaying images, they are also difficult to spot visually; apply a -20 modifier. They are hyperspectral, sensing from near-infrared to ultraviolet wavelengths. [High]

These advanced radar systems employ entangled emissions to acquire a higher resolution, similar to using a shorter wavelength. Quantum radar produces images with detail equivalent to terahertz or infrared, making it better for detecting concealed objects and targets. Apply a +20 modifier to Perception Tests made with quantum radar systems. [High]

Many sensors are hidden within everyday objects or constructed to look like something different so as not to be an obvious surveillance tool. This modification to a sensor device applies a -30 modifier to Perception Tests made to spot it and identify it as a sensor. [Low]

Carried by aerial drones and orbital satellites or mounted at high infrastructure points like habitat domes or the axis points of cylinder habitats, these cameras can view an area up to 300 square kilometers in size down to 0.1 meter resolution. They can view in standard visual, near infrared, or ultraviolet; hyperspectral versions are also available. [Moderate; High for hyperspectral]

Covert Gear II - The Wide Wide World of Sensor Systems

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