Nobody wants to go through the chaos and perhaps even court death by being right smack in the middle of a natural disaster, but when that happens, one would definitely need all the help possible in order to pull through that particular ordeal. Having said that, where earthquakes are concerned, the issue is whether rescue workers are able to tell as to whether someone is under a particular piece of rubble or not. Trained rescue dogs do come in handy during those times, but NASA might have something to aid the work of rescue workers, by working on a device which is capable of detecting a faint heartbeat, even from under several feet of strata, all the way 20 feet of solid and 30 feet of other crushed material.
The device will be known as FINDER, which is an acronym for Finding Individuals for Disaster and Emergency Response, and it will be used to locate individuals who happen to be still alive after major disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes and tornados. So far, FINDER prototypes have been tested in more than 65 simulated disasters by a couple of Urban Search and Rescue teams, and those tests ended with great success. Hopefully it will prove itself to be equally successful in an actual situation. [Press Release]