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Democratic Republic of Congo Fights Illegal Logging with AS&E’s Z Backscatter Vans

Dépèche transmise le 12 décembre 2011 par Business Wire

Democratic Republic of Congo Fights Illegal Logging with AS&E’s Z Backscatter Vans

Democratic Republic of Congo Fights Illegal Logging with AS&E’s Z Backscatter Vans

BILLERICA, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--American Science and Engineering, Inc. (“AS&E”) (NASDAQ: ASEI), a leader in X-ray detection technology, announced today the receipt of an order for two Z Backscatter Vans (ZBV) funded by The World Bank and procured by SGS, the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing, and certification company, for the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

“With its mobility and flexibility to move from location to location, the ZBV system is an ideal solution to scan trucks on the border to find smuggled tropical wood in cargo. The system offers unparalleled ability to detect and image organic materials, including wood.”

In this first ever use of X-ray inspection systems in the DRC for smuggled wood detection, the Ministry of the Environment, Nature Conservation, and Tourism (MENCT), will work with SGS to implement, operate, and maintain AS&E’s ZBV systems with added Forwardscatter® capabilities to detect tropical wood that is illegally logged and smuggled out of the country.

The DRC’s ZBV deployment is part of the country’s launch of a new program to fight illegal logging and exportation of wood and timber — a significant concern. Five hundred thousand cubic meters of timber are officially harvested each year in the DRC, yet the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN) estimates that unofficial logging more than doubles that total1.

“We are working with the DRC’s Ministry of the Environment to provide innovative solutions to monitor forestry activities on their borders,” said Anthony Fabiano, AS&E President and CEO. “With its mobility and flexibility to move from location to location, the ZBV system is an ideal solution to scan trucks on the border to find smuggled tropical wood in cargo. The system offers unparalleled ability to detect and image organic materials, including wood.”

With the second largest tropical forest in the world2, the DRC forests are critical to the world’s climate. Over half of the DRC is covered in tropical forest3, a resource which is critical to the economy of the country’s 71 million inhabitants4. According to estimates by the UN, if the current rate of timber exploitation continues, as much as two-thirds of the Congo Basin forest will disappear by 20405.

AS&E’s Z Backscatter Van (ZBV)

A breakthrough in X-ray detection technology, AS&E’s Z Backscatter Van is the number one selling non-intrusive mobile inspection system on the market. The ZBV system is a highly mobile screening system built into a commercially available delivery van. The ZBV system allows for immediate deployment in response to security threats, and its high throughput capability facilitates rapid inspections.

About The World Bank Group

The World Bank Group is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries. It comprises five closely associated institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA), which together form the World Bank; the International Finance Corporation (IFC); the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA); and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Each institution plays a distinct role in the mission to fight poverty and improve living standards for people in the developing world. For more information, please visit www.worldbank.orgwww.miga.org, and www.ifc.org.

About SGS

SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 67,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 1,250 offices and laboratories around the world. For more information, visit www.sgs.com/en/.

About AS&E

American Science and Engineering, Inc. (AS&E) is a leading worldwide supplier of innovative X-ray inspection systems. With over 50 years of experience in developing advanced X-ray security systems, the Company’s product line utilizes a combination of technologies, including patented Z Backscatter technology, Radioactive Threat Detection (RTD), high energy transmission and dual energy transmission X-ray. These technologies offer superior X-ray threat detection for plastic explosives, plastic weapons, liquid explosives, dirty bombs and nuclear devices. AS&E’s complete range of products include cargo inspection systems for port and border security, baggage screening systems for facility and aviation security, and personnel and passenger screening systems. AS&E® systems protect high-threat facilities and help combat terrorism, trade fraud, drug smuggling, weapon smuggling, illegal immigration, and people smuggling. AS&E customers include leading government agencies, border authorities, military bases, airports and corporations worldwide, including the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), UK Border Agency (UKBA), Hong Kong Customs, and Abu Dhabi Customs. For more information on AS&E products and technologies, please visit www.as-e.com.

Safe Harbor Statement: The foregoing press release contains statements concerning AS&E’s financial performance, markets and business operations that may be considered “forward-looking” under applicable securities laws. AS&E wishes to caution readers of this press release that actual results might differ materially from those projected in any forward-looking statements. Factors which might cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements contained herein include the following: significant reductions, delays or cancellations (in full or in part) in procurements of the Company’s systems by the United States and other governments; disruption in the supply of any source component incorporated into AS&E's products; litigation seeking to restrict the use of intellectual property used by the Company; limitations under certain laws on the Company’s ability to protect its own intellectual property; potential product liability claims against the Company; global political trends and events which affect public perception of the threat presented by drugs, explosives and other contraband; global economic developments and the ability of governments and private organizations to fund purchases of the Company’s products to address such threats; the potential insufficiency of Company resources, including human resources, capital, plant and equipment and management systems, to accommodate any future growth; technical problems and other delays that could impact new product development and the Company’s ability to adapt to changes in technology and customer requirements; competitive pressures; lengthy sales cycles both in United States government procurement and procurement abroad; future delays in federal funding, the market price of the company's stock prevailing from time to time, the nature of other investment opportunities presented to the company from time to time, the company's cash flows from operations and market and general economic conditions. These and certain other factors which might cause actual results to differ materially from those projected are detailed from time to time in AS&E’s periodic reports and registration statements filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which important factors are incorporated herein by reference. AS&E undertakes no obligation to update forward looking statements to reflect changed assumptions, the occurrence of unanticipated events, or changes in future operating results, financial condition or business over time. Readers are further advised to review the “Risk Factors” set forth in the Company’s most recent Form 10-Q and Form 10-K, which further detail and supplement the factors described in this Safe Harbor Statement. Among other disclosures, the Risk Factors disclose risks pertaining to that portion of the Company’s business that is dependent on United States government contracting as well as international customers.

1 “Democratic Republic of Congo,” Illegal-Logging.Info, http://www.illegal-logging.info/approach.php?a_id=70 (accessed 1 December 2011).
2 “Frequently Asked Questions: Forests in the Democratic Republic of Congo,” The World Bank, 24 March 2009, http://go.worldbank.org/FL7IMT3610 (accessed 1 December 2011).
3 “Frequently Asked Questions: Forests in the Democratic Republic of Congo,” The World Bank.
4 “Background Note: Democratic Republic of the Congo, U.S. Department of State,” The U.S. Department of State, 30 September 2011, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2823.htm (accessed 1 December 2011).
5 “Democratic Republic of Congo,” Illegal-Logging.Info.

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