New Airport X-Ray Sees Through Clothing

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

MESA, Ariz. -- A new X-ray machine for detecting weapons and explosives on airline passengers makes its debut Friday in Phoenix.

The so-called "backscatter" device will be used at one checkpoint in one terminal at Sky Harbor International Airport.

The machine visually strips off clothing, although a Transportation Security Administration spokesman says the image it projects looks more like a chalk drawing than a real person.

Airport officials say the program will be voluntary for people who require additional screening after going through the regular screening process. Those who choose not to go through the backscatter will be given a standard pat-down instead.

The X-ray technology was developed for prisons.

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