Connected handheld instrument strengthens global law enforcement

Last year, the Lund based company, Serstech, launched a hand-held instrument that can identify various chemical substances, such as drugs. Combitech, commissioned by Serstech, has developed a cloud computing solution which makes it possible to recognise correlations between measured results. Something that can bolster global cooperation against organised crime.

The spectrometer developed by Serstech utilises integrated databases to identify a multitude of chemicals, from pharmaceuticals to explosives, eco-toxins and narcotics.

Combitech, for Serstech, has developed a unique system solution that connects all instruments from Serstech so that operators within agencies such as customs, police, military and emergency services, can manage their instrumentation and share measured results with each other. The solution (the first version of which has already been demonstrated to customers) makes it possible to identify correlations in various measured results.

"If a certain substance is detected in one place, the system makes the information available to all units across the globe," says Peter Höjerback, CEO of Serstech. "This means, for example, that customs authorities around the world can monitor shipments from a specific country or forwarder if there are grounds for suspicion."

In Europe alone, 80 new narcotic preparations were discovered last year. Another advantage is that the database can be continuously updated with newly identified substances, which is imperative for customs and police in combating the importation of narcotics. The system also allows external experts, if necessary, to remotely access the system in order to analyse an unknown substance. The same system can be used for the safe handling of industrial chemicals.

"An acutely limited approach toward chemicals and measuring instruments means that society is exposed to great risks. Serstech's system provides a unique overview," says Theis Meggerle, Business Unit Manager at Combitech.

The system solution has been in continual development since 2014. After the launch, Serstech (with support from Combitech) will further develop the system and tailor it according to customer needs.

"Combitech has experience in the development of scalable, secure solutions and has supplied the same demanding target groups that we are aiming for," says Peter Höjerback. "And at the same time Combitech is also working with smaller companies, not only large companies and authorities, which was a determining factor in our choice of supplier."

How the measuring instrument works
Serstech has developed a hand-held measuring instrument, a spectrometer, which uses a laser to measure the reflectivity of chemical substances. Every substance produces a unique reflection, a "molecular fingerprint", which is then compared with the instrument's integrated database. The instrument also has a built-in programme guide which, at the press of a button, provides information regarding the substance's properties and how it should be handled safely. For more information watch this video or visit

For more information
Charlotte Magnusson, Head of Communication, Combitech
Tel.: +46 734 184 143, E-mail:

Peter Höjerback, CEO, Serstech
Tel.: +46 709 759 000, E-mail:

About Combitech
Combitech is a Nordic technical consultancy company with more than 1,400 employees in Sweden, Norway and Finland. It is an independent company within the defence and security group Saab AB. Read more at