LEVI McPHERSON, a graduate student of analytical chemistry at the University of North Central Florida, is approached by agents of the Homeland Security’s Counter-terrorism Unit. The agency is recruiting Lee to study and expose the loopholes of screening instruments in airports. Struggling financially, he accepted the offer, making him a paid, benevolent hacker of the nation’s gateway. Yet Levi is horrified when an Airbus from Los Angeles disintegrated in mid-air.

At 40, when everybody’s career trajectory is going up, Levi’s still a poor graduate student, struggling financially. His research projects however, are worth million dollars. Researching the highly classified and heavily guarded secrets of detecting traces of explosives, what Lee know was a goldmine. The agency's offer is his financial break . So Levi tackles the problem like a scientist, detailing the loopholes of the aviation security and turning what he knew into a big time money machine.

JIM and JONATHAN of the counter-terrorism unit, where nowhere to be found after Charlotte International Airport, a hub of Delta Airlines closed abruptly because of instrument malfunctions in their security lines. And in a post-Osama Bin Laden’s era, the biggest blow to the United Stated after the 9/11 disaster comes unexpectedly when a passenger plane blew up in the skies of Washington D.C., in the heart of the nation.

Levi knew it was only the start of more troubles, so he recruits his fellow graduate students to counter the future attacks. They have to think like criminals—and scientists too. With the help of FBI counter-terrorism experts, Homeland Security and Transportation Security Agency, the team races to close and plug the loopholes Lee identified.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Middle Seat

I found The Middle Seat  section of the Wall Street Journal a treasure for anything related to the airport. Since I'm writing a novel about airport security, this will be my routine, visiting this blog and their site every Thursday, or when I'm lost and my mind comes out blank of any significant plots or progress in writing.

Here's what comes out from my writing today after reading the blog:

 The plane just took off from Reagan International Airport. One of the pilot's hated area to fly is Washington D.C., because regulators had banned commercial planes, choppers and twin-engine planes to fly close to the nation's treasured landmarks. But the National Airport is situated close to those landmarks, and maneuvering to stay away from Washington Monument takes more effort.
The pilot check the altimeter in front of him and glanced at the DC landmark outside to his left. The smoke inside blurred his vision and it  filled the airplane's cabin quickly. Passengers outside the cockpit were confused if the smoke was from the air conditioning.   The panicked captain yelled, "Evacuate! Evacuate!" The passengers froze.
Norman Snive struggled to unbuckle his seat belt. He panicked and passengers were pushing and shoving. 

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