TSA says radiation of body scanners 10 times higher than expected →

March 16, 2011 |

Ars Technica:

The Transportation Security Administration is reanalyzing the radiation levels of X-ray body scanners installed in airports nationwide, after testing produced dramatically higher-than-expected results.

They say that the difference in the radiation levels is due to a calculation error, but that the scanners are still safe and will remain in operation, for now.

From an engineering standpoint, I have to agree the radiation levels involved seem to be safe with a comfortable margin (1,000 scans are equivalent to one standard chest X-ray). But still, that is not the issue here. The issue is that the TSA has deployed an insufficiently researched technology, without any kind of medical studies backing it up. This so-called “calculation error” could have been much higher, and we only would have found out now, many months after they started operating.

From a personal standpoint, though, I don’t like those scanners one bit.