GOLETA, Calif. - The Terminal Wellness Project, a temperature check pilot program that launched Tuesday at the Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX, is backed by engineering ingenuity based in Goleta.
“A world-class airport isn’t defined just by our historic investments in a reimagined LAX and an improved traveling experience –– it’s also about world-class safety,” said Mayor Garcetti. “This project reflects the best of this city’s innovative spirit, and it will help keep travelers healthy and set a new industry standard.”
The Enhanced Body Temperature (EBT) Screening Program monitors guests arriving from other countries as well as those departing, using special thermal cameras to identify people with elevated temperatures.
"The unique thing about our product is that it actually scans the crowd and looks at every individual, you can check their temperature near their eyes, on their forehead," said Brent Lindstrom, Sales Director for Electro Optical Industries. "We can scan the crowd in less than 2 seconds."
Electro Optical Industries and Flir, both based in Goleta, are both involved in the thermal imaging camera station. The two companies are known worldwide for their top-quality and wide-ranging infrared technologies and devices, used primarily in security, military and, first responder industries.
"So we have the two cameras joined together both working to track the fever," said Mike Moschitto, Operations Manager for Electro Optical Industries. "We're excited because it can be a huge potential for large crowds, because that's our niche. Right now, they have two different spots down there and then the third one is supposedly going to go down to the mayor's office at LA here in the next month."
Moschitto explained that the infrared camera can detect an elevated temperature while the second camera, a pan tilt zoom device, allows health officials to see the actual face of the person detected in a large crowd. The team also created a reference device to confirm the infrared readings are accurate.
"Both (infrared cameras) say, 'Oh, there's an anomaly here in this person's temperature and you need to check them a little bit closer.' So, it adds redundancy to the results, which is a pretty important thing if you're talking about a crowd of hundreds," said Randy Trent, Engineering Manager for Electro Optical Industries.
The device can scan multiple people at once and detect someone with a temperature of 100.4F or higher, consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's recommendation.
The goal is to identify travelers with a temperatures and minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 to other travelers and airport staff.
Flir's representatives were in Los Angeles Tuesday and agreed to talk with NewsChannel in person in the coming weeks, to share their assessment of the pilot program.
The team put in long hours to create the system in roughly one month; normally similar devices can take years to build.
"Pretty crazy times in the world right now and it's cool for me to be able to work on something to help try to mitigate that craziness," said Chris Quesada, Software Engineer at Electro Optical Industries.
LAX plans to use these screenings, located ahead of the check-in area, as part of a larger program to keep travelers and airport staff safe. The Terminal Wellness Project will monitor airports guests for the next three weeks.
For more information about Electro Optical Industries, click the following link: https://www.electro-optical.com/
For more information about Flir, click the following link: https://www.flir.com/