Canine Security Evolved

Vapor Wake® is our method and system for detecting explosives and other illicit substances. Vapor Wake working dogs are specifically trained to detect body-worn explosives on a moving target. Unlike traditional EDD teams, which are trained to view static objects or people as their “productive area,” Vapor Wake dogs are obedient to the odor itself.

This is what enables a Vapor Wake canine to consistently and effectively do what others cannot: follow an explosive target to its source in real time while the target is in motion. Additionally, Vapor Wake dogs have been socially and environmentally raised to work in high-flow pedestrian areas. Because of this, they can accurately screen hundreds of people passing through an entry point in a nonintrusive way. Our technology and training program produce versatile K9 teams that can be deployed in settings ranging from concert venues to airports.

Auburn-university-logo | Vapor Wake | professional canine handlers
  • Patent Number: US 8,931,327 B2 (The only patented technology to detect body worn explosives in transit.)

  • Exclusive Licensing Agreement with Auburn University
  • NCS4 Lab Tested and Approved

How Does Vapor Wake® Work?

Scent particles are carried behind a person in a “thermal plume” produced by the body’s natural heat. A person’s natural thermal plume goes upwards when a person is standing still, but as soon as they begin moving, the thermal plume extends behind them, much like the wake behind a boat in the water (thus the name, “Vapor Wake”). Vapor Wake K9 Detection Teams will work through a crowd by sampling the cross-section of people moving within. As soon as a Vapor Wake dog detects an explosive odor, it will follow the source: a person, a bag left behind, something carried inside and then hidden – a Vapor Wake dog will always follow the threat to its source.

Auburn University’s Role

Vapor Wake began with years of research, breeding, and testing at Auburn University’s Canine Performance Sciences (CPS) program. Future Vapor Wake canines are specially bred and socially raised to be effective at explosive detection, even in distracting environments. VWK9 (through its parent company ITC Captial Partners) is the exclusive commercial distribution partner for Auburn’s CPS program, making Vapor Wake available to the public. Auburn University and AMK9 continue to work together to refine and perfect Vapor Wake’s patented technology. Together, they ensure any and all Vapor Wake Canines perform consistently across the board.

Vapor Wake | VWK9

Vapor Wake® Key Points

  • Proven and patented canine technology through Auburn University

  • Capable of detecting “moving” odor hidden explosive on a person.
  • Can screen large crowds without impeding traffic flow.

  • Effective and non-invasive security service.

  • Affordable and friendly to the fan experience.

  • Available for immediate deployment.


In November 2012, VWK9 (through its parent company ITC Capital Partners) teamed up with the Auburn Research and Technology Foundation (ARTF) in order to merge operational background with grounded scientific theory and practice. This unprecedented corporate and university alliance and collaboration in pursuit of K9 excellence enabled Auburn University to make Vapor Wake available to the public. In 2014, the Auburn Research and Technology Foundation and VWK9 were awarded the Alabama Launchpad University-Corporate Partnership.

This success with Auburn University has grown into a professionally collaborative, cooperative venture that includes affiliate offices on campus, a formal partnership with Auburn’s Canine Performance Sciences program, joint business ventures, and expansion of their commercial opportunities in K9 science and technology.


Once a litter is born, the puppies’ training begins. Over the first 6-12 months, the future Vapor Wake dogs go through extensive social and environmental raising, supervised by the Canine Performance Sciences staff. Puppies are exposed to a variety of stimuli and environments in order to prepare them to work in loud, distracting, and crowded environments without losing focus.

At three months, the puppies begin the human bonding process. The future Vapor Wake dogs are sent to local prisons where the inmates actually help with the training process. This initial human bonding process lasts until the K9 is one year old. This is the initial building block of our Vapor Wake® team configuration of one dog/one handler.

In addition, Auburn University’s Veterinary Sports Medicine Program provides cutting edge physical conditioning, nutritional program design, veterinary care, canine performance research and support to prepare the dogs to work in any environment.

After their year under Auburn University’s social raising program, VWK9 takes over the training for Vapor Wake dogs on their 320-acre training facility in Anniston, AL. Here, the K9s hone their detection skills with patented training specific to Vapor Wake explosives detection. The result is the most versatile K9 unit on the market.

Past Performance

VWK9 Vapor Wake dogs and handlers offer mobile explosive detection teams ideal for sporting events and heavy-pedestrian flow or high-profile events. The National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security recently put Vapor Wake K9s through their Lab Test. Not only is Vapor Wake now certified by NCS4, it also holds the first and only lab tested capability on K9 security. The VWDC are being used at several high pedestrian venues including St. Louis Cardinals, Dallas Cowboys, Amtrak, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and Harvard Commencements.

Vapor Wake® Detection canine teams have even been utilized in the most critical areas during the inauguration of the President of the United States in 2012. Our Vapor Wake® Detection teams screened people entering the seating area that would be closest to the president, providing an added level of security against hand-carried and body-worn explosives.

Lab-Tested-NCS4_vapor-wake | Vapor Wake | professional canine handlers

VWK9 has been evaluated and certified by The National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi. NCS4 supports the advancement of sport safety and security through training, professional development, academic programs, and research. NCS4 collaborates with professional leagues, open access events, intercollegiate and interscholastic athletics, along with professional associations, private sector firms, and government agencies. It is a critical resource for sport venue managers, event managers, first responders, and other key stakeholders. For more information


Contract VWK9 Vapor Wake® Services

Every client has a unique set of requirements and VWK9 understands this. We offer the deployment of Vapor Wake® K9 Detection Teams to assist in meeting your specific needs and fully integrating into your daily security activity. Contact us to learn how Vapor Wake® technology can close your security gap, and ensure that your next event is protected.

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Try Out Our “Red Team”

VWK9 offers the opportunity to try Vapor Wake K9 teams at your next event to safely test and identify how Vapor Wake can address real security gaps in your organization. Our Red Team includes licensed explosive handlers (to be used as a “decoy” in the crowd) and real Vapor Wake K9 Teams. Contact us to schedule the Red Team, and try Vapor Wake during your next event.

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Become a Vapor Wake® Handler

VWK9 is pleased to sell Vapor Wake dogs and to provide Vapor Wake Handler training. Convenient to our partners at Auburn University, the home of Vapor Wake sales and training is located in Anniston, AL, where these unique K9s experience a rigorous advanced explosive training process which is modeled specifically for Vapor Wake®. Once you have selected your Vapor Wake® K9, you can experience Vapor Wake® Instruction and Certification Programs to prepare your Vapor Wake® K9 team for success.

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