The Transportation and Security Administration (TSA) is testing shoe scanning technology at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) this summer.
Transportation and Security Administration officials note that the biggest complaint agents receive about the security screening process at airports is passengers having to take their shoes off.
Testing of the new scanning technology is a key step towards eventually allowing passengers to keep their shoes on when they go through the airport security checkpoint, officials said.
Two of the new screening units, manufactured by L3 Communications, will be used at LAX to collect data and evaluate the technologies’ potential use in the checkpoint environment. Since the testing is solely for data collection, the shoe scanners will be positioned in front of the walk-through metal detector, and passengers will still need to remove their shoes to go through the screening process, according to TSA.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology division is also testing shoe scanners and will collaborate with TSA on the results.
TSA will use units on loan from L3 to conduct the testing and will continue to examine new technologies, such as the shoe scanner that can help improve security and reduce hassle for travelers, officials said.