See through clothes scanner gets outing at Heathrow Airport

A new Passenger screening x-ray machine at Heathrow airport sees through passengers' clothes. The machine X-rays through clothing and creates an anatomically correct image of the person, revealing any concealed object under clothes.

Heathrow, which for security reasons declined to say how the new X-ray machine improves on current scanners, denies the machines could cause embarrassment. "It's a very low dose X-ray, the images are not stored, it's same sex operated and the operator that sees the image will not see the person," said the airport spokeswoman.

According to InfoWorld TechWatch, new scanners using a technology developed at the U.S. DOE's Pacific Northwest National Lab are about to appear at airports. The scanning process lasts only 1.5 second and produces on a computer screen a holographic image of the individual’s body and any objects he or she is hiding. But don't be afraid: there is a privacy mode, which can blur some parts of your body, such as your chest or rear. These scanners will be deployed not only in airports, but also in prisons, military caps and at vorder crossings.

The SafeScout portal looks like a small revolving door, minus the actual doors. Inside there are speakers and video cameras, allowing security personnel to communicate with the individual from a remote location. That was the 1.5-second scan. A second later, a holographic image of the individual’s body and any objects he or she is hiding appears on a computer screen.