JCAD is a detector or network of detectors capable of automatically detecting, identifying, and quantifying chemical agents inside aircraft and shipboard interiors, providing hand-held monitoring capabilities, and protecting the individual soldier sailor airman and marine through the use of pocket-sized detection and alarm. The lead development service for JCAD is the USAF through the Human Systems Program Office Nuclear Chemical Biological Defense Systems Division (HSC/YAC) at Brooks AFB.
The Joint Chemical Agent Detector program will provide the military services with a hand held combined portable monitoring and chemical agent point detector for ship, aircraft, and individual warfighter applications. JCAD will automatically detect, identify, and quantify chemical agents in their vapor form. The system will be capable of operating in a general CW (Chemical Warfare) environment and undergoing conventional decontamination procedures. It is to be designed to interface and be compatible with current and future anti-chemical, nuclear and biological software. It is to be flexible in that it can be upgraded for future threats. The JCAD will provide the warfighting personnel with a lightweight deployable device that helps preserve lives by facilitating situational awareness in a hostile chemical environment.