Entrepreneur Raising Funds to Integrate Biometric Sensor into Firearm

BOULDER, CO. —18-year-old Kai Kloepfer is launching a crowdfunding campaign December 16th to fund the development of a “smart gun” – a fully-functional live firearm with integrated fingerprint sensor. With the funds raised from the campaign, Kai will commission a team of engineers from VisionWorks Engineering in San Diego, California to advance his current prototype to the stage where it can be mass-produced. View the campaign video here.

Kai’s smart gun is designed to prevent accidental shootings, thefts, suicides, and wrongful use. When the user grips the gun normally, it reads his fingerprint and compares it against a list of users that is stored inside the gun. If it matches, the gun is ready for fire, otherwise it remains locked and secured. The fingerprint sensor itself employs military-grade encryption with a key unique to that firearm to ensure the highest possible degree of certainty that the owner and their designees are the only people who can use the gun. He is designing a full gun with the biometric safety integrated into it, where he can control every step of the process to achieve greater precision and reliability.

In the midst of a national conversation on gun violence, smart guns have been touted as a solution that won’t infringe on gun owners’ rights and that doesn’t need political buy-in.

Kai’s smart gun has been featured in The New York Times, CBS Evening News, and in a viral video that has been viewed 20 million times across platforms. Kai is a grantee of the Smart Tech Challenges Foundation, a group fostering innovation through firearm safety and his first smart gun design and prototype earned the top American engineering prize at the 2013 Intel Science Fair.