By Stacey Leasca
April 01, 2019
Airport Security with Laptops
Credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Frequent fliers rejoice: Getting through airport security may soon get a little faster.

On Friday, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced the implementation of new screening technology known as computed tomography, or CT, that will allow passengers to keep their laptops in their carry-on bags while going through security.

According to administrator David Pekoske, who spoke to the press on Friday, the agency has been testing the technology at more than a dozen airports since 2017.

The rollout of the CT machines will begin this summer, Bloomberg reported. The cost of the 300 machines will come with the hefty price tag of $97 million. No word yet on exactly which airports will receive the machines first. But in the end, it all may be worth it.

“It’s not a little bit better, it’s a lot better,” Pekoske said of the new screening technology. The 3-D scanners, a press release explained, will also test for explosives with "unprecedented precision.”

"It's essentially a response to a large and growing travel public every year," TSA press secretary Jenny Burke told CNN. The goal, she added, is to both keep people safe and provide the best passenger experience possible.

As Bloomberg reported, the new CT technology creates 3-D images of bags’ contents. It is able to automatically detect items that the TSA now asks passengers to remove prior to screening. Currently, the contract is only with Edgewood, Maryland-based Smiths Detection, however, Pekoske said that in the future it could likely include multiple vendors.

There is one major caveat: According to Pekoske, the machines have yet to cut down on line wait times at participating airports. However, he noted, with more training, a shorter security line is likely as time goes on.

But hey, at least now you won’t have to rummage through your bag in line, which could help calm an already stressful experience. And that alone may be worth it.