The Transportation Security Administration has selected 29 airports that are to receive recently purchased millimeter wave Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) machines, including Gainesville Regional Airport.
Laura Aguilar, manager of public relations and governmental affairs at the Gainesville airport, said TSA officials will be visiting in the next few weeks, but she did not have an exact date for the installation of the AIT machines here.
The machines will be deployed with new automated target recognition software designed to enhance privacy by eliminating passenger-specific images while streamlining the checkpoint screening process, according to a TSA press release.
“We remain committed to implementing technologies that strengthen passenger privacy while ensuring the highest level of security,” said TSA Administrator John S. Pistole. “In addition to improving the passenger experience at the checkpoint, Advanced Imaging Technology continues to give us the greatest opportunity to detect and deter evolving threats to aviation.”
AIT is designed to enhance security by safely screening passengers for metallic and non-metallic threats—including weapons, explosives and other objects concealed under layers of clothing.
The TSA says imaging technology screening is safe for all travelers, and the technology meets all known national and international health and safety standards. The energy emitted by millimeter wave technology is 1,000 times less than the international limits and guidelines, according to the TSA.
In September 2011, TSA purchased 300 millimeter wave units, which are being deployed in the coming months. Currently, there are nearly 500 AIT units at 78 airports nationwide. President Obama’s fiscal 2011 budget included the purchase of 500 units, and the President’s fiscal 2012 budget requests funding for an additional 275 units. For more information about AIT, visit www.tsa.gov/ait.