Smiths Detection has launched an advanced people-screener which uses electronic, real-time imaging in a standard checkpoint layout to detect concealed weapons or explosives.
Using a patented technology based on millimetre (mm)-wave imaging, the screener provides a clear, moving picture of the person passing in front of a flat panel. A remote operator can check for any threat items hidden beneath clothing.
The screener, called eqo because it senses the echo of the transmitted signals, heralds a new era in security scanning as conventional systems are bulky, slow to pass through, and use mechanical scanning which takes a delayed image.
eqo is the first to provide electronically scanned imaging with instant images. It comprises a portal and panel configuration and, with no moving parts, its long-term reliability is much greater.
Tiny antennae covering the two-metre high panel bounce harmless mm-wave energy around the person standing in front of it. Variations in reflection generate a three-dimensional image that reveals any kind of hidden material threat – metal, liquid, ceramic, or explosive.
Using a fraction of the floor space of conventional scanners, eqo's open-plan design helps speed passenger throughput. Air travellers just have to pause to face the panel and then turn around before continuing their journey. Future configurations should allow them to pass through a series of panels without any pausing or turning.
In addition to remote operation that provides anonymity for passengers, privacy filters such as face blurring are built into the system. The equipment is also programmed to be incapable of storing, transmitting or printing any images. eqo can be deployed in a range of installations, from event venues and jails to government buildings and mass transit points.