The machine can screen 1,200-1,800 bags per hour and has a four-level system to deal with all kinds of suspicious baggage

The newly-built international terminal at Chennai airport will finally get an inline baggage system. The installation of the facility within a fortnight will be a major step towards its commissioning.

Last week, minister of state for civil aviation K.C. Venugopal had announced that the new terminal would be commissioned within a month.

Airport director H.S. Suresh said the machine had originally been procured for Srinagar airport. As a different security system is in place there, it was decided to install the machine in Chennai

Mr. Suresh said the machine can check 22 bags per minute and its peak capacity would be 1,200 to 1,800 pieces of baggage per hour. Two inline baggage systems are already functioning in the existing international departure area.

The German-made machine will screen baggage at four levels.

At the first level, screening is done by a high-speed multi-view computer sliced X-ray machine. At this stage, the role of the operator will be to only start or shut down the machine. Sixty per cent of the baggage will be cleared at the first level itself, Mr. Suresh said.

Forty per cent of the baggage will move to the second level, where images from the first level will be transferred to a work station. Here, an operator will diagnose the screened image. If the operator is unable to check the image within the stipulated 20 seconds, the images will be sent to another work station for a more detailed analysis.

Mr. Suresh said 98 per cent of the baggage will get cleared at the second level itself. Baggage rejected at that level will be then screened for explosives or examined by a sniffer dog. At the fourth level, any baggage that gives cause for suspicion will be examined in the presence of the owner.

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