One small company, PositiveID, of Delray Beach, Fla., has developed a prototype device for testing for Ebola and other viruses and bio-threats, relying largely upon millions in federal dollars to fund its research. Developed in a lab in Pleasanton, Calif., the device looks like a mini-clamshell laptop. When closed, it is somewhat smaller in width and length than the iPad Mini, but much thicker — about 2 in. It weighs about 2 lbs.
Called the Firefly DX, it can be used to test a sample of a person’s blood or other bodily fluid for the presence of Ebola and other diseases at an airport screening area or a remote field location within 10 to 15 minutes.