Homeland Security

TSA expands scanning tech

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The Transportation Security Administration will continue to expand 3-D baggage scanning and credential authentication technologies in the coming year, said the agency's administrator.

TSA Administrator David Pekoske, said in an Aug. 10 blog post that in the coming year, his agency will continue to expand deployment of Computed Tomography X-ray machines at the nation's airports, as well as expand the deployment of credential authentication technology.

Pekoske said CT X-ray capabilities can identify threats in finer detail and possibly eliminate the need for passengers to take out liquids and electronics from their carry-on luggage. The technology also applies algorithms for explosives and creates a three-dimensional image that can be manipulated in three axes on visual display by TSA officers.

TSA announced on July 30 that it would have up to 40 CT scanners in place at airports around the country by the end of this year, with 16 more in testing facilities. By the end of fiscal 2019, the agency said, it plans on having more than 145 in place. TSA began testing CT last June at Boston's Logan International Airport and Phoenix's Sky Harbor International Airport.

Pekoski said the agency also has "made great strides" in deploying identity technologies, including testing and expanding use of credential authentication technology (CAT), to match passenger photo IDs against the Secure Flight database. CAT testing has expanded to 42 systems at 13 airports, from a start of 17 systems at seven airports a few years ago.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a senior staff writer at FCW, whose beat focuses on acquisition, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Energy.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, tele.com magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


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