Tech Bytes

Feb. 15, 2008
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has a new website that aims to demystify the environmental regulations process. Read all about how the EPA writes regulations, or check out the transportation section of the ‘Reg Info by Business Sector’ for the latest on deicing and the EPA’s overview of the aviation industry.
The “Airport of the Future” will be at Daytona Beach International Airport, and Embry-Riddle Aero-nautical University will receive just under $2 million in grant funding from the Federal Aviation Administration to establish it.

The school’s objective is to create a national and major airport-based testing site for the Next Generation Air Transport System technologies and demonstrate the practical integration of available and emerging technologies.

So far, Embry-Riddle’s “Airport of the Future” project has attracted nearly $4 million in private investment from the industry.
FLIR Systems reports orders totaling $2 million from a number of U.S. airports, including Dallas-Fort Worth, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, and the New York area Port Authority airports of Kennedy, LaGuardia, Newark, and Teterboro.

The orders are for thermal imaging technology, primarily to be used for perimeter security, and were purchased as part of the DHS’s perimeter intrusion detection initiative for domestic airports. FLIR technology looks for heat signatures of intruders and vehicles using what’s called passive thermal infrared.
The much-talked about advertising at the bottom of security bins can now pop out at passengers even more. SecurityPoint Media has formed an exclusive agreement with Azuna, patent-holder of a printing process that produces four-color imagery with deep dimensional effects on a recyclable polypropylene plastic substrate. Consumer message retention and ad recall, Azuna claims, is close to three times that of standard printed material. The company counts Easton Sports, KFC, and the New York Yankees as clients.
SITA creates SITA Lab for technology research, with a goal of driving innovation for the air transport industry. Based in Geneva, the lab will deploy an Innovation Knowledge Management system that will be open to employees as well as customers and partners, in order to create an Innovation Ecosystem for the Air Transport Industry. Ideas that are deemed to have the highest potential impact will be incubated within the SITA Lab using rapid prototyping and joint customer pilot programs on a per project basis, with the objective of creating new SITA products and services.
An unspecified U.S. Government agency awards Smiths Detection three contracts totaling $58.3. The contracts are for cargo screening, including three different X-ray screening configurations: the HCV Mobile, HCV Gantry, and HCV Pass-Through systems. With the exception of the HCV Pass-Through, each system will be deployed at various locations throughout the United States for the inspection of inbound and outbound shipping containers and trucks.

The HCV Mobile inspection vehicle, HCV Gantry, and high-throughput HCV Pass-Through systems are high-energy X-ray scanners used to inspect trucks, containers, and other vehicles for contraband, weapons, explosives, and narcotics.
Sometimes solutions come in simple packages. In June 2007, the Transportation Security Administration began using black lights and magnifying loupes to check passengers’ boarding passes and identification. After six months, TSA says, security officers performing document checking have found thousands of suspect, illegible, or expired documents, including passports, visas, and drivers licenses.

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(Tech Bytes are compiled by assistant editor Anna Stanley; reach her at [email protected].)