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This Machine Helps You Get Through Security Faster At CVG

Ann Thompson
This CT scanner costs $350,000 so the TSA says the rollout will be slow at the nation's airports.

A CT machine, similar to those found in hospitals, is now in operation at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport and at more than a dozen other airports across the country. This more advanced technology allows passengers to keep liquids and laptops inside their bags while going through security.

For the last few years, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents have been using the CT scanner to examine checked baggage. Slowly they are using it to look at carry-ons. Fifteen airports are testing the technology. By the end of 2019, TSA says 145 airports will have it in place.

TSA Regional Spokesperson Mark Howell explains how it works: "What these CT machines can do is create a 3D model of what goes into it. It's taking multiple images at the same time. What it's doing after that is running an algorithym on it to look for threats."

Here is a video of how it works

Ultimately, lines will be shorter as passengers move through quicker without having to take out laptops or liquids. Manish Aggarwah was in line at CVG's only CT scanner. "This is great," he says. "It saves time and the hassle of taking everything out of your bags and putting it separately and then making sure you put it back in your bag again."

One reason the TSA is slow in rolling out this technology is because it's expensive. Each machine costs $350,000 and the total number of lanes to outfit at the nation's 440 airports is 2,500.

With more than 30 years of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market, Ann Thompson brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting. She has reported for WKRC, WCKY, WHIO-TV, Metro Networks and CBS/ABC Radio. Her work has been recognized by the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists. In 2019 and 2011 A-P named her “Best Reporter” for large market radio in Ohio. She has won awards from the Association of Women in Communications and the Alliance for Women in Media. Ann reports regularly on science and technology in Focus on Technology.