Featured Maps: TSA Full-Body Scanners (23 November 2010)

The day before Thanksgiving is usually one of the busiest air travel days in the United States, with extensive news coverage of how busy airports air, or how bad delays are if bad weather strikes.

This year, the dominant travel news seems to be the expanded use of very revealing full-body scanners by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) or very invasive pat-downs for passengers who decline the full-body scans. The TSA uses two types of scanners, the L3 ProVision which uses millimeter waves (MMW), and the Rapiscan Secure 1000 which use backscatter X-rays. Many scientists have raised questions about the safety of the backscatter X-ray devices (e.g., Letter of Concern from four UCSF professors), so it seems reasonable to ask which airports use which type of scanner.

Unfortunately, while the TSA lists 68 airports with 385 advanced scanners, they don't document which type of scanner is used at each of those airports. An article on FlyerTalk provides most of the details which are shown on the map below:

In addition to the 48 contiguous states shown on the map, three other US airports have these scanners:

Additional information:


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