The days of waiting impatiently as the person in front of you in the airport security line fumbles to get their laptop out of their bag or separate their liquids into clear plastic sacks could soon be numbered thanks to Danish technology.
The Hedehusene-based company Exruptive has developed an integrated security scanning system that can scan passengers' hand luggage in one go.
The firm has developed a fibre-enforced, fully-scannable ‘Intelligent Trolley' that will send passengers quickly and effortlessly through security and then guide them through the airport via a built-in tablet.
Exruptive CEO Jakob Schmidt told The Local that the system “is a way of getting rid of queues in the airport”.
“What happens today is that every passenger has to unpack his or her belongings into plastic trays and each tray is scanned individually. That means that security lines are never faster than the slowest passenger,” Schmidt said.
With his system, passengers would take an intelligent trolley upon arrival at the airport, scan their boarding pass on its mounted tablet and then be guided to the shortest security line. Once there, the trolley would be automatically conveyed through Exruptive's scanner where the passenger would pick it up on the other side.
600 passengers per hour
In collaboration with the Technical University of Denmark, the company has successfully tested the technology at a facility in southern Jutland. The testing showed that up to 600 passengers could be screened per hour, a full four times as many as the current standard.
Schmidt said that not only is it “just a faster process”, test participants reported that it was less stressful than the current airport security process.
“When we interviewed the test subjects, who arrived knowing very little, one of the findings is that people said they didn't feel any stress and don't even feel like they were waiting in line. They just proceeded at their own tempo,” Schmidt said.
He said that in addition to cutting down, or even eliminating, security lines for passengers, the system could be a boon to airport retailers by using the demographic information contained within the passenger's scanned boarding pass to send push advertisements and special offers to the trolley's tablet as passengers stroll through the airport.
A video explaining the concept can be seen here. Story continues below.
Current situation "unsustainable"
According to Schmidt, the current airport security system is hopelessly outdated.
“The technology used in airports today is basically 30-40 years old, which is very strange because if you look at the medical scanning field, there have been a lot of advances,” he said.
The current system has also reached its breaking point due to increased security concerns and the rise of discount carriers.
“The whole industry regards the security situation as unsustainable. The way people travel today and the emergence of low-cost carriers mean people are packing more and more things into their hand luggage in order to avoid luggage check-in fees,” he said. “That's become a huge issue it just slows everything down.”
Schmidt told The Local that he hopes his company's solution could make its real-world debut by the end of 2017. The company's partnership with a leading Dubai-based tech firm means “it's not unlikely” that the Exruptive system could first be rolled out at Dubai International Airport.
He said he hopes airports will begin gradually implementing his company's solution into existing security lines over the coming years but cautioned that the extensive certification and security testing required by various international agencies could drag out the process.