Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland has developed a small device that could make the difference between life and death if a shooter again opens fire in a public building.

Courtesy PNNL Acoustic Gunshot Detection System

PNNL Chief engineer Jim Skorpik says the idea surfaced after the Sandy Hook school massacre in 2012 that left six adults and 20 children dead.

PNNL has adapted an already developed battery-operated sensor system for the military to use indoors.

Software has been developed to detect gunshots room-by-room and can notify police within seconds of an active shooter situation.

This small device can be held in the palm of your hand, yet sophisticated enough to assess whether a loud sound is a gunshot via a miniature computer within the device.

More from PNNL here.