Says Crites, "We used Trans-Solutions to do baggage system simulation studies; once again, as nuances to different designs were proposed, we could understand those nuances using a computer-based simulation, and understand cause and effect.
"We liked the idea of having different sets of eyes out there and sharing ideas across teams through a central design and simulation exercise. That way, we could get the best leverage off of those ideas."
After funding, the single biggest challenge when installing an in-line baggage screening system, says Crites, may be its integration. Early on when DFW officials toured other airports to see their in-line systems, he says, it was the need for a central monitoring room that became most evident. DFW, like most airports, was not set up to integrate the systems it had in place.
The end result for DFW is one central monitoring room for the hub's entire integrated system. It used as a primary model a facility San Francisco International had just installed for its new international terminal. "Remember, this was all new to TSA," recalls Crites. "They were not certain they could do this yet [on a hub-wide basis].
"SFO was able to network on the order of six machines. The aspect of going out and trying to network 54 machines, the benefits could be huge. You would use just a fraction of the labor. We started designing the room; working with the EDS supplier to develop the software capability to send all these images to one location; working with TSA to ensure that the protocols would be there so they could make use of this room. It's working out very well. The manpower savings could be huge."
As TSA and other airports look for future installations of in-line systems, Crites sees systems integration as bringing the greatest benefits. "The idea of remote monitoring systems, in a real--time way, will enable them to be more creative in the future when implementing an in-line solution at airports," he says. "It can save even more money, and afford greater flexibility."
Integrated design seamlessly blends security functions into a natural traffic flow at Terminal D.
The first 24 hours of operation of a vast, underground baggage-screening system at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport's Terminal E 1.5 went without a hitch, officials said Monday.