7. NYPD Radiation Detecting Plane

In the fall of 2017, the NYPD acquired a powerful tool in the fight against terrorism: a plane with radioactive detection capabilities (see photos here). The new aircraft, which can fly for up to six hours, covering a distance of 200 nautical miles, scans yachts, cargo vessels, and other ships around the city for radiation that could indicate the presence of a bomb on board. Pilots of the plane can instantly communicate a threat to the NYPD and the Coast Guard should they detect anything suspicious from the air. When the plane is not scanning the waterways for radioactive signals, it is used for search and rescue missions, and to discreetly track criminal suspects.

The new plane is now part of the oldest police aviation unit in the country. Created in 1928, the NYPD aviation unit has been based in Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field since 1929. Its central location allows police helicopters to quickly reach all five boroughs of the city. NYPD helicopters are outfitted with heat sensing cameras, advanced mapping technology, and hoists that allow the aircraft to be used for anything from river rescues to chasing perpetrators.