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Area firm earmarked for $4.8M from U.S.

| Thursday, Dec. 17, 2009

Anti-terror technology being developed in Charleroi received a boost in a bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday.

The $636.3 billion fiscal year 2010 Defense Appropriations Bill that cleared the House includes $4.8 million for Nokomis Inc., of Charleroi, to continue development of detection, identification and anti-IED technology.

Improvised Explosive Devices, better known as IEDs, have killed or injured tens of thousands of American service members in Iraq and Afghanistan, so it's crucial that technology be provided to military personnel that effectively identifies and defeats such explosives.

While significant, the funding in the plan approved by the House is less than the $6 million proposed in July. The new figure represents concurrence of both the House and Senate on the appropriations funding package.

"With the increase of U.S. troops in Afghanistan, we're seeing more and more attacks and casualties from IED's," said U.S. Rep. John Murtha, the Johnstown Democrat whose district includes much of the Mid-Mon Valley.

"I'm proud to support this funding, which allows Nokomis to continue developing advanced technology that is essential to protecting our troops while also providing high-tech jobs here in the Mon Valley."

Formed in 2002, Nokomis is located at 308-310 Fifth St.

The company has additional offices in Pittsburgh and Toledo, Ohio.

The company specializes in electromagnetic effects and electromagnetic signature detection. Nokomis exploits electromagnetic waves through patent-pending technology that has the capability to detect, locate and track electronic devices and their users.

The technology developed by Nokomis can be used by military or law enforcement personnel to identify the threat of IEDs.

This is not the first time the federal government has rewarded Nokomis for its defense-related technology work.

At the ribbon-cutting ceremonies in October for the expanded Charleroi offices, Murtha announced three contracts secured by Nokomis.

Murtha, chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, at that time secured $3.2 million in the fiscal year 2009 Defense Appropriations Bill for Nokomis to continue its work.

In addition, Nokomis was awarded a $9.9 million contract from the Defense Department to continue development of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle based Advanced Electromagnetic Location of Electronic Devices IED system and $750,000 from the U.S. Air Force for remote-controlled IED identification.

The firm received $1 million in the 2008 federal fiscal year budget and $1.45 for 2007 fiscal year. The federal fiscal year begins the October before and runs through the following Sept. 30.

In its expanded facility, Nokomis built a state-of-the-art laboratory as well as a conference room.

Nokomis now occupies 50,000 square feet of laboratory space in Charleroi

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