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  7. What are X-ray television security systems (introscopes)?

What are X-ray television security systems (introscopes)?

X-ray television security systems (introscopes) – equipment is designed to ensure safety through non-contact security of the internal contents of objects and identification of prohibited items or items, as well as potentially dangerous items. There are systems designed to check luggage, hand luggage, correspondence and parcels, and large cargo. Weapons, explosives, drugs, materials of organic origin and much more can be detected using X-ray radiation, which affects objects of different sizes and densities, transmitting the resulting image to the operator’s screen.

X-ray television security equipment can be made in any design and size. Small systems are ideal for scanning parcels in post offices, as well as for checking bags and packages in public places. Stationary large systems capable of identifying prohibited items and materials in suitcases, cargo containers and other containers are installed for customs screening at airports, train stations, nuclear power plants and other places where increased security measures are required.

Area of application

X-ray television security systems (introscopes) have a wide range of applications. Depending on the scope of application, detection objects can be classified.

  • to prevent terrorist attacks
    In this case, the introscope’s task is to identify various explosives, flammable liquids and weapons of any type. Moreover, the classification of the danger of weapons at different objects may be different. In this case, weapons mean a fairly wide range of objects. For example, when traveling on intercity buses and trains or in shopping centers, it is enough to exclude knives, pistols and similar products, and when examined at airports, manicure scissors and nail files are recognized as potentially dangerous.
  • to prevent theft from sensitive facilities, detect contraband and inspect baggage and hand luggage
    In this case, it is important to configure the introscope to identify individual objects (the shape of the object and the material of its manufacture).

Basic principles of the introscope

The operating principle of the X-ray television introscope is based on X-ray structural analysis, i.e. When X-ray radiation passes through the inspected object, a projection of the internal structure of the object is created, followed by the reception of different levels of the radiation signal and final computer processing of the resulting image.

Depending on the design features of the X-ray television security system, the X-ray tube can be placed at the bottom, side or top of the tunnel.

During irradiation, a directed X-ray beam is scattered, colliding with objects of different thickness and density. Materials and objects with high density absorb a large amount of radiation, so on the screen such objects are indicated by darker colors. Accordingly, products and substances with low density are able to absorb a small amount of radiation, and on the operator’s screen they are indicated by lighter colors. Due to this color gradation, the operator receives a complete picture of the internal structure of the object (luggage, parcel or cargo).

Analysis of the resulting image

Previously, X-ray television introscopes could only transmit images in black and white format; today, most models involve the use of a large color palette, which makes the analysis more efficient. In this case, the projection of potentially dangerous or prohibited objects and substances will have a specific color, indicating to the operator the need for a more careful study, and, if necessary, a physical section of the inspected object for visual security. Also special colored markers for materials of organic origin.

The introscope analyzes x-ray losses at different energy levels, which makes it possible to classify the contents of care objects into three groups. In X-ray television systems made in Italy GILARDONI materials are presented as orange for organics, blue for metal , green for inorganic objects (except metal)

What are X-ray television security systems (introscopes)?


Modern introscopes are absolutely safe. Caring objects are inanimate objects, including food and cosmetics, and radiation is not harmful to them.

People are protected from the harmful effects of X-ray radiation, since the design of the installations does not allow the rays to penetrate beyond the system body.

The only way the radiation dose could potentially affect a person is through the entrance and exit of the tunnel. Therefore, the entrance and exit of the X-ray television introscope are protected by special curtains, which contain polymers and heavy metals in order to properly screen the radiation of the introscope. Therefore, it is strictly not recommended to put your hands inside the introscope in order to quickly pull out the object of care. In other cases, X-ray machines are completely safe, so operators do not wear protective suits during their work.

Main parameters of X-ray television systems
  • Introscope penetration
    The penetrating ability of an introscope is a parameter indicating the maximum thickness of steel through which it is possible to inspect the internal contents of the inspected object. For example, explosives can be carried in a box made of thick steel, and only a dark blue object will be displayed on the operator’s screen, since the penetrating power of the device will not be enough to examine its contents. The standard penetrating power of introscopes is 24-32 mm, but if necessary, it can be increased to 55 mm and higher by choosing a more powerful X-ray generator. To avoid deterioration of the system’s technical characteristics, regular maintenance is very important, since the penetration power of the introscope decreases over time.
  • Resolution
    The resolution of an introscope is a parameter indicating the minimum diameter of a copper wire detected by the device, which can be distinguished on the operator’s monitor screen. The smaller this parameter, the higher the ability of the introscope. The parameter indicates how small an object or the structure of an object can be seen by the introscope. Introscope resolution is a very important parameter for recognizing small high-tech objects such as microcircuits, printed circuit boards, thin wires, jewelry, etc.

There are different types of X-ray television systems with one or two sources of X-ray radiation, which make it possible to analyze caring objects in one or two planes. By obtaining an image of an object in two projections, the operator can more quickly assess the contents for danger or takeaway value in the case of a sensitive enterprise.

You can get acquainted with the presented X-ray television systems at link.

Our specialists will be happy to provide the necessary advice and help you choose the device that best suits your needs.