When taking a flight or going to a ball game, you can already print your own ticket and even check yourself in. Coming soon though, developers of the Qylatron are hoping checking your bags at security will become more self-serve – and they've developed a machine just for that purpose.
"The first thing the system does is the ticket-taking for you so you don't have to do a separate process of ticket-taking," Lisa Dolev of Qylur Security Systems said. "You'll open a door, and you'll put your bag in, close the door, walk over to the other side, and if the bag is clear and the machine likes your bag, then the door will turn green and you will use your ticket again to open the door and take your bag."
If it turns purple though, the container stays locked and the security staff is notified of a potential threat – a notification that can even go out via custom software on a mobile device.
Unlike a standard X-ray machine, developers say three sensor systems that provide hundreds of points of information are in this machine: X-rays, done in a special way that can't be disclosed because of security reasons, plus the ability to check for chemical and nuclear threats on every single bag in a matter of seconds. And, while humans can check every image just like they do today, powerful software helps identify threats developers say humans might sometimes miss.
"The simple fact that you're combining several sensors together, you get so much information and that gives you a much more robust picture than what you would typically have," Dolev said.
Now as to the big question: Will this help speed up lines at security? Developers insist it will.
"It's so much easier and faster because there are no bins, no taking everything out, just putting everything in your bag, opening a door and putting your bag through, and that's what we saw when we did field trials – it was that easy," says Dolev.
Developers say field trials for the Qylatron were held at several venues from airports to stadiums and even the Statue of Liberty. And while they can't say exactly where, you can expect to see these machines pop up first on a permanent basis. A major announcement on that is expected in about a month.