You may think you’re off the hook for airport security after taking off your belt and shoes, sending your possessions through an X-ray machine and walking through either a metal detector or X-ray machine yourself, but that won’t be the case if this new technology has anything to say about it.
Researchers have developed a boarding gate with embedded sensors that would be the last line of defense directly before passengers get on a plane.
As the announcement of the prototype states:
[...] flight safety would be significantly increased if it were possible to inspect passengers for explosives at the boarding gate, the last point of inspection before boarding the flight; however, as several hundreds of passengers need to pass through the gate at once, the time taken by conventional metal detectors and X-ray inspections was an issue.
The prototype of the explosives-sniffing boarding gate developed by the Japanese company Hitachi, Nippon Signal and the University of Yamanashi would be sensitive enough to allow passengers to pass through at a relatively fast pace. The company’s announcement states that the gate has technology that collects minute particles on the boarding pass (or mobile device) being scanned and within seconds can indicate explosive compounds. It is fast enough to inspect 1,200 people per hour.
“The technology is expected to contribute to the prevention and containment of carry-on explosives as it inspects immediately prior to boarding without disrupting the flow of passengers, and provides increased security without affecting convenience,” the release states.
Pilot tests of the prototype at public facilities are expected within the next fiscal year.
Read more specifics about the technology here.