Miami International Airport tests out new high-tech scanner for carry-on bags

Laptops, small liquids will eventually be allowed to stay in bags during checks

By Trent Kelly - Reporter

MIAMI - A new piece of technology is designed to make life a lot easier and safer for travelers at Miami International Airport.

"The goal of CT is to increase automatic threat detection, increase operational effectiveness and improve the customer experience," MIA Federal Security Director Dan Ronan said.

Airport officials on Tuesday unveiled their very first, state-of-the-art computer tomography scanner designed specifically for screening carry-on bags.

They'll replace the old X-ray scanners, which only provide agents with a two-dimensional image.

"CT technology automates most of the explosive detection function and allows increased detection of threatening items by providing the TSA officer a high-resolution 3D image," Ronan said.

The improved image leads to better threat detection without requiring travelers to remove laptops and iPads -- a move officials hope will speed up screening.

"As we further develop the algorithms that are going to be out to use here at the airport, passengers will eventually be able to keep their small liquids in their bag," Ronan said.

MIA is now one of 18 airports nationwide that were selected to test out the new system.

"Considering there are roughly 434 airports nationwide that use traditional X-ray screening, we're honored to be on the front line of evaluating new security enhancements," MIA Deputy Aviation Director Ken Pyatt said.

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