Magazine article National Defense

Researchers Tout New Airport Screening Concepts

Magazine article National Defense

Researchers Tout New Airport Screening Concepts

Article excerpt

RESEARCHERS WORKING on grants from the National Science Foundation are exploring revolutionary ways to screen passengers at airports.

"What we are typically doing is screening for capabilities," said Richard Donovan, a professor of engineering at Montana Tech in Butte. "We are developing a new approach that really is screening for intent."

Screeners look for capabilities in the form of knives, gels or liguids or box cutters. Screening for intent is looking for behaviors that are anomalous, he said. The university is developing an autonomous sensor network that uses artificial intelligence algorithms to classify the activities of people as they approach or move about an airport.

Mark Frank, a researcher at the University of Buffalo's communications department, is using computer vision algorithms to automatically identify deception and other behaviors that a terrorist might subtly display. There are cultural differences in the ways emotions manifest themselves on the face. However, physiological responses to emotions such as fear are universal. …

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