300 3-D scanners to be deployed at airports nationwide
WASHINGTON – The Transportation Security Administration today awarded Smiths Detection, Inc. of Edgewood, Md., a $96.8 million contract for 300 Computed Tomography (CT) systems and associated ancillary equipment and services over five years. The award reflects active collaboration with industry to deploy CT technology to the field under the TSA Advanced Technology X-ray program. This technology will vastly enhance threat detection capabilities for carry-on baggage and overall effectiveness at airport security checkpoints across the U.S.
“Smiths Detection, Inc., offered the best value for TSA in this procurement, and has been chosen to support the most consequential technology deployment to checkpoints in the recent history of the agency,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske. “These state-of-the-art 3-D scanners will enable our screening officers to detect explosives and other threats to commercial aviation with unprecedented precision.”
TSA uses CT technology to screen checked baggage and began piloting CT technology at two airport checkpoints in 2017, in conjunction with robust laboratory testing. In 2018, 10 units from various manufacturers were placed in select airports for comprehensive field testing as part of the test and evaluation process. This initial purchase will supply and support TSA with CT units with deployment to begin in summer 2019 and be completed in 2020. Concurrently, TSA has and will continue to deploy other CT units unrelated to this procurement to further develop enhanced algorithms that improve operational efficiency and automated detection.
In making its final decision, TSA weighed several factors to include successful field and lab tests, production capability, and the ability to upgrade the systems, as well as price.
“This CT purchase supports the larger modernization efforts of the agency and would not be possible without the support of Congress, especially the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and the House Committee on Homeland Security, as well as our appropriations committees,” added Pekoske. “The nation’s transportation systems are now better off – more secure, as a result of their work on funding this technology.”