By Jodi Prill, Associate Editor
Hold Baggage Screening
of EDS discuss current technology, look to the future
As airports continue to research and examine the explosives detection equipment (EDS) that will be necessary to meet Transportation Security Administration requirements for hold baggage screening, equipment manufacturers continue to enhance existing technology as well as explore new avenues. AIRPORT BUSINESS magazine recently spoke with representatives from InVision Technologies, Inc., L-3 Security & Detection Systems, and Smiths Heimann regarding current deployments and future possibilities.
INVISION TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
InVision is the manufacturer of the TSA-certified CTX machines. David Pillor, senior VP of marketing and sales, explains the CTX 9000 is designed to be integrated into the baggage system. As airports automate the security process and move toward in-line screening, he says many of the CTX 2500s and CTX 5500s, designed as freestanding units, will be replaced by the CTX 9000.
Pillor says the CTX machines scan baggage for explosives by using "CT scan cross sectional images" and can process some 500 bags per hour.
One advancement InVision is exploring is reducing the false-positive rate of the machines. "A false-positive rate is the number of times out of 100 that a machine finds something in a bag that's suspicious, Pillor says. "Our false alarm rate is about 20 percent.
"We are developing improved software algorithms that would take that false alarm rate down maybe as much as in half. We use post-detection classifiers, or PDCs to analyze electronically with the computer every false alarm to further rule them out. This software will be tested by the TSA, and that will probably happen between now and the end of the year."
InVision purchased Yxlon, a German security technology firm, which provides a complementary technology to CT scanners called x-ray diffraction. "We will install those [as part of an in-line system] and the alarm bags from a CT will go to an Yxlon machine. This machine has a very low false alarm rate and actually does a chemical analysis of the threat area in the bag to confirm if it's a false alarm or a real alarm. It will run about 250 bags per hour."
InVision is currently in a design process that, if successful, would create a retrofit that could increase the speed of the CTX machines within the next two years, according to Pillor. "So as airport passenger load grows, we want to be in a position to have the machines processing more bags."
In order to measure the effectiveness, operability, and functionality of a technology it must be tested in a real-world environment.
GE Security Announces First Operational Sensor-Fused Explosives Detection System for Checked Bag Screening
Revolutionary Sensor Fusion Approach Integrates Existing Sensor Technologies to Drive Screening Performance Beyond Capability of Currently Deployed Explosives Detection Solutions
Nice Côte d'Azur International Airport in Nice, France has purchased four high-speed CTX 9800 DSi explosives detection systems (EDS) to screen hold baggage.
Under the new delivery order, the 43 EDS machines, valued at $51.6 million, will be delivered by the end of the year.