Smiths Detection

Incheon Airport partners with Smiths Detection for supply of security screening equipment

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Smiths Detection has been awarded a contract to supply Incheon International Airport in South Korea with checkpoint security screening equipment. The agreement was made through Smiths Detection’s local partner, Donggok Precision, to supply a suite of passenger baggage screening equipment at the airport’s Terminal 1.

Incheon Airport previously partnered with Smiths Detection to provide its high-speed explosives detection system, HI-SCAN 10080 XCT for hold baggage screening in 2021 and successfully trialled the security screening specialist’s Ultraviolet (UV) light tray disinfection kit in 2020.

This latest agreement will see Smiths Detection provide the air transit hub with ten HI-Scan 6040 CTiX scanners, nine iLane ASC automatic tray return system (ATRS) units and an advanced checkpoint and screening management solution, Checkpoint.Evo, to connect all x-ray units and operator workstations.

The scanners which use Copmuted Tomography (CT) technology can generate 3D images that deliver a very high level of detection and low false alarm rates. Meanwhile the ATRS units will increase baggage throughput and alleviate bottle necks during the passenger screening process. To accommodate specific local space requirements the units will be customised to allow for fire shutters to close through the lane in case of an emergency. According to Smiths Detection, the introduction of Checkpoint.Evo will enable Incheon Airport to become one of a handful of airports currently able to conduct remote screening.

In addition, Smiths Detection will deliver a comprehensive training programme, which will include face-to-face training.

Commenting on the contract Aurelien Guilbert, Smiths Detection’s Managing Director of North & South Asia, said: “we’re delighted to have been chosen by Incheon International Airport to supply a range of our products, continuing to delivery leading-edge technology for security and efficiency. Our technology will further enhance ICN’s existing security measures while streamlining the passenger journey from check-in to take off. As the travel industry continues its steady recovery there is no better time to introduce new security technology.”

South Bend Airport names TSA its partner of the year

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The St. Joseph County Airport Authority has presented the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) with its Partner of the Year award for services offered at South Bend International Airport in Indiana.

According to a statement from the airport TSA officers have been on the frontline to provide safe screening services for all travellers throughout the ongoing pandemic. The team at South Bend Airport has done so while maintaining smiles and excellent customer service.

“We regularly hear about positive experiences travelers have when going through security at SBN,” said SBN CEO and Executive Director Mike Daigle. “The Transportation Security Officers engage with a smile and positive attitude that directly impacts the travel experience. We are proud to have such a great people working for TSA in South Bend.”

Baggage screening upgrades underway at Perth Airport

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In line with the Federal Government mandate to further strengthen Australia’s domestic and international aviation security, Perth Airport is set to commence a $13m upgrade to its Checked Baggage Screening system across all terminals.

Perth Airport CEO, Kevin Brown, remarked the airport’s top priority is to ensure the safety and security of passengers and their loved ones.

“While security efforts at passenger screening points is obvious, what people don’t see is that each checked-in bag is screened prior to being loaded onto an aircraft,” said Brown. He explained that this behind-the-scenes process is crucial to ensuring safe, secure air travel.

“With the introduction of CT x-rays for all international and domestic checked baggage screening processes, the new state-of-the-art equipment will improve the efficiency of the screening process.

“The new CT x-ray machine will use 3D technology to ease detection of suspect goods in passengers’ checked baggage.”

The airport has engaged local construction company Georgiou Group to deliver the project, to ensure it’s a local investment in local jobs.

Steve Okill, Georgiou Building General Manager, said the company would leverage its experience to deliver the project at Perth Airport.

“We have a solid understanding of what Perth Airport expect when it comes to infrastructure upgrades and look forward to delivering another high-quality upgrade to PAPL,” he said.

“As this project spans all four terminals, our priority will be to minimise disruption to operations while utilising innovation to provide time and cost savings.”

In addition to improving its baggage screening processes, Perth Airport has also embarked on an upgrade to its passenger screening infrastructure across all terminals.

Can flow analytics help airports manage restroom safety and cleaning efficiency?

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While airports have always had to maintain high hygiene standards, according to Veovo’s Christian Bugislaus Carstens, the pandemic has forced a renewed focus on how high-touch, high-traffic areas are used, cleaned and sanitised.

Previously, it might have been enough to ensure all facilities were regularly cleaned, on schedule, to maintain a predetermined standard of hygiene. Now the challenge is significantly more complex. Restrooms must be kept clean and free of crowds. An influx of passengers can no longer be left to their own devices to find their way to the nearest facilities.

Airports must ideally understand facility usage, react quickly to ensure sanitation and reduce crowding, and have the ability to plan custodial tasks more efficiently.

Bugislaus Carstens underlines that many airports are turning to a combination of sensors and machine learning to track and analyse people’s movements within the airport to manage restroom usage.

Occupancy and density analysis enables operators to understand how many people may use a specific restroom at a particular time, based on counting and controlling the situation of each bathroom in real time.

When presented with live occupancy data, passengers can make informed decisions about which facility to use – including information on the walking times to alternative, less crowded restrooms.

By combining live occupancy data with passenger flow analytics, operators can also measure and predict crowding events ahead of time. This enables the airport to direct the flow of passengers across restroom facilities before they become too busy – for example, including messages on digital displays to encourage dwell time in less active zones or dynamic directions via wayfinding apps.

Shifting to need-based cleaning

Rather than a static, rota-based cleaning and sanitising schedule, airports would benefit from moving to a needs-based system.

Armed with historical usage insights, custodial service managers can align cleaning plans to forecasted usage and flight schedules while monitoring staff activity for accurate cleaning-time display.

Deploying custodial resources to the busiest facilities, as needed, makes sense. Therefore, services that can adapt easily to being responsive, even predictive, to shifting flight schedules and people movements will be the most efficient and effective.

A straightforward extension for passenger flow platforms

For many airports, especially those that already have passenger flow systems in use, it’s a simple matter of expanding their data-capture capabilities to include restroom facilities or, in many cases, integrating existing sensor outputs into one common platform.

This extension fits neatly with the already proven benefits of airport flow management, including real-time responsiveness to handle challenges on the go, predictive analysis that improves efficiency, and cost savings by ensuring resourcing matches demand.

For example, airports can understand the impact of gate changes on restroom crowding. They can predict how security bottlenecks affect lounge dwell time and facility usage and determine the optimal custodial response.

Understanding how events affect passengers’ show-up profiles, movement, dwell habits and facility usage throughout the airport makes it possible to automate the appropriate responses.

By using programmes such as Veovo’s airport-wide flow management technology, airports can connect passenger flow analytics, occupancy, and density analysis with operations. The technology means airports will also have the appropriate tools for more intelligent, predictive decision-making from passenger arrival to departure and at every point in between.

US Department of Homeland Security partners with Vanderlande for security screening solution

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Vanderlande’s concept for a self-screening passenger security checkpoint solution for airports has been selected by the US department of Homeland Security (DHS) for further design, development and operational testing. This will be carried out as part of the DHS Science and Technology Directorate’s Screening at Speed programme to improve screening efficiency and the passenger experience.

Vanderlande’s concept will include the supply and integration of screening lanes with its smart virtual divest assistant solution. Alongside its partners Rohde & Schwarz and dormakaba Group, Vanderlande will deliver a fully integrated and self-screening passenger checkpoint concept, as well as an operational prototype for assessment by the DHS. Dormakaba Group will provide its market-leading secure access control systems, while Rohde & Schwarz will supply its Quick Personnel Security scanner.

Andrew Manship, Vanderlande’s Executive Vice President, said: “There has been a clear trend towards passenger self-service solutions at airports, allowing for more efficiency and independence for passengers. We are excited to explore the potential of self-service security checkpoint solutions together with our partners and the US Department of Homeland Security.”

Westminster Group secures screening and surveillance contract for two African hubs

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The technology division of global security solutions provider, Westminster, has been chosen to design, supply and install advanced screening and surveillance equipment to two airports in Southeast Africa.

The contract will see Westminster offer a full turnkey solution and includes the upgrading of security equipment, including new x-ray screening and metal detection equipment, as well as an advanced CCTV surveillance system and new control and command centres at both airports. Westminster will also establish an engineering presence in-country for future maintenance and support services.

Commenting on how the contract is yet another example of Westminster’s growth, Westminster CEO, Peter Fowler said: “It is yet another example of [our] growing global reach across a wide range of disciplines and demonstrates our ability to secure business in new territories. Not only does this contract open a new region for our international operations, but we believe it creates an exciting opportunity for our Managed Services division in developing a wider scope of works and long-term support services at the airports.”

Genetec’s badging solution enhances airport employee background checks

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To assist with meeting the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) stringent regulations required to verify the credentials of airport employees and contractors, Genetec has unveiled its new airport badging solution for airports to automate employee background checks and meet TSA compliance regulations.

The new Security Center Airport Badging Solution (ABS) reduces the need to work with multiple different systems and simplifies the entire badging process. Not only does the turnkey solution minimise the risk of human error but it also streamlines the overall badging process by saving time and increasing efficiency. It’s of particular benefit to smaller and regional hubs, where the badging process is often reliant on a paper trail.

“The TSA can show up at any time, in any airport, big or small, and perform a compliance audit of their badging department,” said Joseph Degrassi, Regional Director, Public Sector at Genetec. “Unfortunately smaller airports have been mananging this process using paper, which can be a time-consuming process often resulting in lost information, and potentially large fines for compliance violations. The Genetec Airport Badging Solution provides an industry first, out-of-the-box, simple solution for these airports to ensure compliance, optimise the badging process, and lower the overhead needed to run a badging department.”

ABS’ design is based on standards raised by the TSA as well as specifics from clearing houses such as AAAE. All data collected on each badge applicant is compiled and stored within the system. Customised dashboards are included within Security Center to showcase insights such as real-time applicant statuses, and unaccounted fro badge percentages so that airport administrators can make more informed decisions, especially when it comes to meeting audit and compliance regulations set by the TSA.

London City one of first UK airports to receive ICAO-approved health accreditation

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With international travel ramping up ahead of the summer months, London City Airport has received Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Public Health England (PHE) accreditation for new health measures.

The airport has been formally approved as COVID-secure in line with the CART Take-Off guidelines set out by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

The accreditation followed a rigorous two-day assessment, which included a full audit of the passenger journey for both departure and arrival. CAA and PHE officials saw first-hand the range of health measures that the airport has put in place, including enhanced hygiene measures, support services to staff and processes to ensure passengers can move quickly, and safely, through the airport, whilst still delivering a great customer experience.

“We understand that some passengers may be apprehensive about travelling, but they should be assured that we are not only doing everything we can to not only keep them safe, but to make the London City experience as simple and straightforward as possible,” said Alison FitzGerald, COO, London City Airport.

“Being one of the first UK airports to achieve this globally recognised health accreditation, which is endorsed by our regulator and Public Health England, will hopefully give people the confidence to book their travel with LCY for a much-deserved break this summer.”

With the airport expected to offer flights to more than 30 UK and European destinations this summer, the assessment also looked at London City’s  preparedness for a significant increase in passenger numbers. To facilitate this, the airport’s onsite testing centre will be expanded and offer all relevant tests for key international travel markets, with passengers able to pre-book £66 PCR tests for departure and arrival, and same-day result LAMP tests available for £76.

Redline sees increased demand from airports for its security solutions

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Redline, a provider of global security solutions and an Air Partner company, has secured six business wins with customers located around the world and totalling in excess of £1 million in revenues. The wins include agreements with airports, as well as public transport operators, regulatory bodies and government support agencies.

Edinburgh Airport has awarded Redline a three-year contract renewal for its x-ray threat image recognition training (TIRT) system. And Teesside International Airport has become a new customer having agreed a two-year contract with Redline for its digital Security Management System (SeMS).

Commenting on the new partnership, Phil Forster, Managing Director at Teeside International Airport said: “The airport is on an exciting journey of transformation and growth, with Redline playing a key part in our future success. Digital SeMS is a welcome enhancement that will help us to manage and improve our security performance.”

Meanwhile, Mark Briffa, CEO of Air Partners, added, “We are pleased to see a strong rebound in demand for Redline’s services in anticipation of lockdown measures and travel restrictions lifting. It is testament to our first-class product offering and customer service that both new and existing customers, from international airports to government departments, continue to place their trust in us.”

Redline is noting an increased demand for its security solutions as airports begin to scale up operations, including for its user-friendly and technically advanced TIRT system, which has been designed to fine-tune x-ray image screeners’ ability to detect even the smallest components of viable threats. Meanwhile, its proprietary SeMS, which allows managers to effectively assess and manage risk in an ever-changing threat environment, is also gaining good traction with customers.

To hope businesses across the aviation industry as they plan for the return of international travel, Air Partner has also recently launched its newly branded National Safety & Security Academy (NSSA) in Doncaster, which was previously the National Security Training Centre (NSTC).

Smiths Detection unveils new lithium battery detection for air cargo and checked baggage screening

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A leader in threat detection and security screening technologies, Smiths Detection, has launched a new lithium batteries algorithm for its dual-view air cargo and checked-baggage screening system – the HI-SCAN 10080 EDX-2is.

“We are continually striving to develop new technologies to ensure the safety of people globally,” said Richard Thompson, Global Director Aviation for Smiths Detection. “Harnessing the power of deep learning is crucial in further developing object recognition algorithms. This new technology has been developed by working with our customers to capture thousands of X-ray images to then be analysed by the new algorithm so it can learn to detect lithium batteries based on shape,” he explained.

Providing automatic detection of lithium batteries in all freight and baggage screened for explosives by the HI-SCAN 10090 EDX-2is, the algorithm reduces the burden on image analysts with very low false alarm rates.

With consumer demand for lithium batteries growing significantly, these batteries are the primary power source for personal and portable electronic devices. Classified as dangerous goods because of the potential for these batteries to ignite, lithium batteries pose a significant safety threat.

The lithium battery algorithm is part of Smiths Detection’s family of AI-algorithms, iCMORE, which Smiths Detection launched in July 2020, and which provides powerful automatic detection of dangerous goods and weapons across its conventional X-ray and EDS technologies using deep learning and classical material discrimination, increasing the safety of passengers, staff, goods and aircraft in a quick and efficient way.

“This algorithm will provide the powerful detection of lithium batteries while increasing efficiency and speed for users,” added Thompson.