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TUCSON, Ariz. - University of Arizona engineers are developing a cutting-edge lie detection system with the hope of putting it to use at the U.S., Mexico border.

The Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessments in Real-Time or AVATAR system records facial expressions in real time with the help of its multiple sensors to determine whether the subject being questioned is being truthful or not.

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The system records the subjects voice, body, and eye movements in order to make its determination. 

"The AVATAR technology was developed for the most rigorous and difficult task of detecting deception at the border," said Jay Nunamaker. 

Nunamaker not only worked on developing the technology for the past 30 years but he also serves as the president and CEO of Discern Science International Inc., the local startup company that now has the license to the technology.

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The system is meant to have someone walk up to it, scan their passport, and fingertip all while the machine scans their pupil dilation and overall movements. 

From there, the AVATAR determines whether or not the person in question is being truthful. At the end, the system routes all of the information through a complex analytical algorithm to produce results.

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If the system flashes a green light, that means the subject is clear to pass. If the light flashes yellow, that means there are some issues that need to be investigated and if it flashes red that means there are some serious issues that require deeper investigation. 

Nunamaker hopes the technology will be in full working order at the border within the next two to three years. 

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