The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is testing a device that could speed up security screening at airports.
The new screening method, called passive terahertz technology, screens people from up to 25 feet away without emitting radiation. It reportedly can scan as many as 2,000 people per hour.
Currently being tested at a facility in Virginia, the device could eventually replace body scanners and metal detectors at airport security checkpoints. The technology, developed by London-based Thruvision, measures the energy a person gives off — similar to thermal imaging used in night vision goggles.
“It’s 100 percent passive. There is no radiation coming out of our device,” Kevin Gramer, the vice president of Thruvision said to the San Diego Union-Tribune. “You don’t have to stand directly in front of the device.”
Passive terahertz technology is just one innovation the TSA is testing as it attempts to cope with growing demand for air travel. If Thruvision’s device passes testing, it will be put on trial at individual US airports and then possibly rolled out nationwide.
According to Gramer, Thruvision’s “goal is to help TSA increase security and the passenger experience.”
This tech has been used in public previously. The system screened people attending Ariana Grande’s tribute concert in honor of the victims of the 2017 Manchester Arena bombing. Additionally, the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced this summer that it would use the system to prevent terror attacks at its stations.
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