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The long, slow process of going through airport security is one step closer to speeding up.
After weeks of testing, the Transportation Security Administration has certified 3-D carry-on bag screeners built by Massachusetts-based Analogic. The approval moves the machines are one step closer to being deployed at airports around the U.S.
The federal government still needs to test Analogic's screeners at the TSA Systems Integration Facility and then field test the machines at airports to see how they perform. If the CT Connect machine passes those tests, it would then be approved for deployment at airports.
Once in place, Analogic said the machines will speed up how long it takes for TSA officers to screen carry-on bags for weapons and explosives.
"The system is designed to offer the lowest cost of ownership and keeps the traveling public moving through airports faster and safer than ever before," said Fred Parks, president and CEO of Analogic.
American Airlines has already committed to spend $6 million buying and deploying the Analogic CT Connect bag screeners. Each machine costs $250,000.
The appeal of 3-D bag screeners is the ability of security officers to get a clearer view of carry-on bags. Current machines used at more than 2,500 airport security checkpoints give a two dimensional view. As a result, security officers spend more time double checking bags, and according to government tests, the officers often miss weapons in carry-on bags.
Analogic said it's unclear when the first 3-D screener will be deployed.
(Correction: An earlier version of this story failed to mention further testing was needed before the scanner could be deployed.)