- The chip, which sells for $200 (U.S.), is encoded with a unique identification number and critical medical or security information.
- After using a local anesthetic, a doctor injects the chip into muscle tissue. The chip is coated with silicon, which makes it difficult for the body to reject. Postop, the implant is monitored for several weeks to ensure it doesn't move.
- To access the medical data stored on the chip, a millimetre-long magnetic coil is activated by an external handheld scanner (price tag: $1000 to $3000 U.S.).
- A tiny transmitter then sends out two to three sentences of data that can be read by the scanner.
- To track a missing person by satellite, the chip must be combined with a global positioning system. ADS is in the process of making an ultramini GPS device that can be implanted in human tissue.
Meanwhile, outside the U.S. ADS is developing a GPS-enhanced version of the chip for a booming market in places such as Latin America - where kidnappings of business executives and politicians are commonplace. Brazil's foreign minister, Antonio de Cunha Lima, is lobbying to become the first person in his country with an implant that acts as a tracking device. ADS expects this to be possible in about a year.