Our Analogic Security and Detection team recently returned from the 2018 Passenger Terminal Expo (PTE) in beautiful but very chilly Stockholm, Sweden. Despite the occasional snow flurry, the event was a major success for us. We conducted checkpoint CT demonstrations of our ConneCT product for more than 25 airports located worldwide and spoke to current and potential distributor-sales partners from Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Here are a few of our takeaways from the expo:
For this DeteCT expert interview, we are fortunate to get the perspective of Christopher Bidwell. He has had a distinguished career in aviation security and a unique understanding of how industry stakeholders work with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). In his current role as Vice President of Security for Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA), he works with the TSA and Congress to identify risk-based aviation security measures that increase both efficiency and effectiveness, and serves as ACI-NA’s technical expert on aviation security processes, procedures, technology. Prior to ACI-NA, he was managing director for security at the Air Transport Association, and held safety and security management roles at American Airlines, Reno Air, and United Airlines.
Recently, we highlighted Analogic’s long history of innovation in medical and aviation security CT. We provided side-by-side images comparing medical CT with 2D X-ray to demonstrate the additional level of detail that CT provides over 2D X-ray. To build on this, we spoke with Robert Ferguson, MD, chief radiologist with MetroHealth Medical Center for his perspective on why CT is superior to 2D X-ray. Here is what he had to say:
In a recent blog post, From COBRA to ConneCT: Innovations That Make Analogic Checkpoint CT Industry Leading, we compared and contrasted the differences between our first-generation COBRA checkpoint CT system, which was launched in 2007, and our new next-generation Analogic ConneCT system. In addition to the technical innovations that have gone into the next-generation ConneCT system, there are additional image-analysis and user-interface features that can only be found on the Analogic ConneCT system. These features, which we discuss below, not only help address passenger throughput needs but also directly improve aviation security and threat detection – the core mission for any checkpoint CT system.
With over 1200 aviation security CT systems installed globally, we understand that for many airports, better threat detection requires making it easy for human operators to quickly analyze images of screened carry-on bags. That is why when we designed ConneCT, we included a powerful combination of image analysis tools that no one else in the industry provides:
In the last year, the aviation industry, government agencies, lawmakers, the media and even the general public have realized the benefits of checkpoint CT (computed tomography) technology over the currently used 2D X-ray systems. In what seems like a nanosecond, key stakeholders have gone from asking “What is checkpoint CT?” to “How fast can checkpoint CT be deployed at airports?”
Aviation security professionals have long warned about the ability of terrorists to find new ways to attack the flying public, and since 9/11 it seems every few years we have witnessed a new, chilling example of terrorist ingenuity and flexibility.
In the United States, the development and adoption of new aviation security technology is often the result of a complex process involving not only airports, airlines, and technology manufacturers – but most notably the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and theU.S. Congress. To help make sense of this often-confusing dynamic, we turned to Michael Higdon, founder and CEO of consulting firm A1.9 Strategies LLC. Prior to starting A1.9, Higdon worked for a top 10 Washington lobbying firm and was chief of staff to U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.). In total, Higdon spent 14 years on Capitol Hill working with Congressional appropriations subcommittees including Homeland Security, Transportation, Energy & Water, Defense, Interior-EPA and Agriculture.
Analogic has been leading the medical and aviation security industry in developing advanced Computed Tomography (CT) imaging and automated threat detection algorithms for decades.
American Airlines is the world’s largest commercial airline.The company connects approximately 350 destinations worldwide and serves over 500,000 passengers per day. We spent a few minutes with American’s Chief Security Officer, Mr. Jose Freig, to understand what the company is focused on and where he sees the industry going.
We wanted a big picture perspective of aviation security technology, so we interviewed Steve Wolff. After leading Marketing and Engineering for Quantum Magnetics and founding InVision Technologies, he is now an independent consultant, editorial board member of Aviation Security International Magazine, and vice chair of the Concealed Explosives Detection Workshop.