b'SECURITYMIA 51technologies year-round, while its salt air and high summeruse, and so on, Bamberger explains. The information goes back temperatures expose the equipment to harsh environmentalto the developer to improve the equipment.factors.We are also an urban environment with city streets on all fourWhat Theyre Discoveringsides of our 3,000 acres, Hatfield adds. Its a complex, dynamicTo date, TSA researchers are finding that drone activity at MIA is environment, making it a tough proving ground and rigorous exponentially greater than what is being seen by airline, control test bed.tower and law enforcement personnel. Recently, TSA began similar testing at Los Angeles InternationalThat does not mean the activity is bad, Bamberger specifies. Airport, which provides different noise and geography conditionsIt just means there are a lot of drones out there, and some for evaluating various technologies. It will give us a lot moreare operating in restricted airspace. You cannot tell intent from information, Bamberger says. We might add more airportstechnology, but we are not seeing anyone who is trying to crash eventually if we get more funding.a drone into an aircraft or airport on purpose. We are just seeing a lot of activity, which we think is due to people being unaware of Testing the Tech FAA regulations and restrictions. Equipment manufacturers are using many forms of technology toFrom MIAs perspective, the program is already demonstrating detect, track and identify drones. Those being tested at MIA include: value and potential. For instance, the first RF detect, track andRadio frequency identification (RFID), which detects radioidentify technology TSA tested successfully detected a drone frequency exchanges between controllers and drones. Thisover the parking garage near the main terminal building. The technology can identify the height, speed, takeoff/landingpolice were notified, and MIA dispatched its own officers to the spots and paths of drones.roof of the parking garage. It was a permitted contractor using Electro-optical detection, which leverages high-visibilitya drone to look at some RF antenna locations, says Hatfield. cameras to spot drones. But the immediacy and efficacy of the detection and follow-up Acoustic technology, to detect drones by their sound patterns.communication was impressive. Radar. This technology is similar to airport radar used toStill, he notes that the program has also revealed that there is detect aircraft.no silver bullet or magic black box. Every technology has strong Thermal or heat signature technology, which allows personnelpoints and limitations, he stresses. to detect and follow a drones path. To qualify for field-testing in the program, each technology vendor fills out a detailed questionnaire and submits a demo unit. TSA personnel first test the equipment in a controlled laboratory to assess how the technology will work in various weather and atmospheric conditions. Next, they determine whether the equipment can operate safely in the National Airspace System. This provides the data needed to receive FAA approval for operational testing. Remember, this equipment must operate inNOW TSA QUALIFIEDthe most challenging environment in the U.S., an active airport with lots of communication,TRANSFORM SECURITY SCREENING WITHBamberger emphasizes.AMERICAS FIRST NEW AIRPORT BODY SCANNERNext, TSA personnel test the equipmentFind out why airports worldwide are choosing the at MIA for approximately 90 days. We dontR&SQPS201 Advanced Imaging Technologyask the airport to shut down or do anything differently, he advises. We want to makeHigh-definition screeningsure the technology will work in an operationalIndustry-leading throughputairport environment. Relaxed scan poseThe agency tests the detection equipmentExpands access for disabilitiesby using drones that have FAA permission toOptimizes checkpoint layout and space www.rohde-schwarz.com/qpsfly in specific flight patterns near the airport. When we test this technology, we find out if its missing certain altitudes, speeds or types of drones, how RF [radio frequencies] affect its AirportImprovement.comJanuary | February 2023'