US scientists find flaws in full-body airport scanners

Written by: Abdul Nisar
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Melbourne, Dec 14 (ANI): Scientists in the US have found flaws in full-body airport scanners, which they say could let terrorists smuggle guns and explosives onto planes.

Researchers say that parts of the human body and other benign objects create "noise" that can interfere with the machine's signals, and while scanner operators may be able to spot some of the items, many others such could go unnoticed.They (the scanners) are ineffective for thin objects such as blades when they are aligned close to the beam direction," quoted the report as saying.

"An object such as a wire or a box-cutter blade, taped to the side of the body, or even a small gun in the same location, will be invisible," it stated.

The study comes from leading University of California physicists Leon Kaufman and Joseph W. Carlson - who spearheaded the development of today's medical imaging technology.

The authors even demonstrated how 40g of explosives could fit inside a "pancake" shape taped to the abdomen that would be "virtually invisible" to the technology.

They also studied a widely published image of a woman using the device and found that a gun taped to her side is only visible because her arms are lowered next to it.

Travellers must raise their arms when going through the scanners - meaning the item would be invisible.

The Transport and Security Administration is yet to comment on the latest findings.

The findings have been published in the Journal of Transportation Security. (ANI)

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