Health risk of airport security scanners questioned

In the wake of the recent incident on a Northwest/Delta flight over the holidays, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has been working to develop more comprehensive security scanners.

The hope is that these enhanced screenings will be able to detect explosives smuggled on the bodies of passengers.

To date, the TSA has deployed two types of scanning systems:

Millimeter wave technology, which uses low-level radio waves in the millimeter wave spectrum. Two rotating antennae cover the passenger from head to toe with low-level RF energy. The scan takes about 40 seconds, and produces a fuzzy negative-like image that will reveal anything that could be stashed under the passenger's clothes.