Science News reports that a new invention can find buried corpses at a good distance, and even through thick layers of construction material. The method employs a thin, flexible tube to detect extremely faint chemical signatures in the air near a dead body.
The mechanical nose is more sensitive than corpse-sniffing dogs, ground-penetrating radar, or chemical testing of air and soil. Thomas Bruno of the National Institute of Standards and Technology continues:
“For a body buried under a concrete slab, there is nothing else that would work. Ground-penetrating radar has problems, and you don’t have access to the soil to do analysis.”
The new device is so effective that it can detect decaying bodies more than twenty weeks old, well after the smell of decomposition has vanished.
Because a zombie occupies a human corpse, this same technique might well be used to quickly scan a room or building for any signs of the walking dead. No more surprise attacks form the ghoul in the basement, or hiding behind the couch.