IR Scan @ Muscat Airport

25 05 2009

So, we have IR scanners at our airport. I knew that  there was ‘increased security’ and that ‘it takes longer to exit’ after departing the plane, but, as usual, details on what was happening were scarce. Now, KT has this suitably small news.

MUSCAT — Oman’s health authorities have advised citizens and residents visiting swine flu affected countries to exercise caution, such as washing hands frequently and avoiding congested places.

IR camera in the UK

An IR camera in the UK

The Health Ministry also said no cases of the H1N1 virus had been detected in the country. It added precautionary steps adopted by the Sultanate included installing thermal scanners at the Muscat International Airport.

The infrared scanners, which became operational last week, is set at 38 degree Celsius and records body temperatures of passengers as they enter the arrival lounge. Rashid bin Hamdan Al Hajri, Director of the Medical Technology Department at the ministry explained: “If a passenger’s body emits a temperature of more than 38 degrees, the scanner will show his image in red and set off an alarm.

The passenger will then be examined  at the airport, and if necessary, transferred to a hospital.

I like how such matters are thought of, planned, decided and implmented with minimum of fuss and hoopla that surrounds the same activities where citizen rights are a concern. No petitions, no discussions, no pointless to-and-fro. A very simple case of “Swine flu causes fever – fever is observed by body tempurature – it is detectable by IR camera – buy and install them”, and that’s it!

So, naturally, I wonder what the camera’s output is. Is it focused on the target’s head? Is it a body scan? Are there separate cameras for men and women? Is the output being seen separately by men officers and women officers? ‘Coz there is variety out there. There are sophisticated scanners and really neat ones that give some rad outputs (kinda nsfw).

But I don’t know, coz I haven’t been to the airport in, ahhh, a couple of months now. If I had, I would’ve managed to sneak a peek behind the counter. I even once got to see the whole thingy, as there was a foam shooter thingy that was nagging the dude and so he called me and showed me the X-ray display and asked me what that was. Since my usual eloquence was unable to convince him, he had the bag opened for a visual inspection, allowing me stand there all the time and gawk at the x-ray scanner… yiippee!! =)

-FK

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3 responses

25 05 2009
Davis

I’m always impressed with how favorably international airports compare with American ones — loved the one in Doha

27 06 2009
Laith Juwaidah

It’s an IR camera, not X-ray, IR cameras can’t see through clothes, as a matter of fact, you can see less than you can see with the naked eye; all you can see is the shape of the body with the temperatures shown as different colors, the lighter ones being the higher temperatures. But, apparently, theses cameras won’t even show that, they’ll just show people walking, coloring the ones that have fever with red.

I’m really glad they did this.

26 08 2014
prkralex

This airport has one passenger terminal and one cargo terminal. The passenger terminal building has facilities for departures and arrivals, duty free shopping and a VIP building.

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