As reported by Dallas’ NBC5 News, trace explosive detectors used by airports have proved to be ineffective. In a rush to provide the public with some peace of mind and a deterrent to terrorists, TSA rushed these puffer machines into service.
The machine works by releasing multiple puffs of air at a passenger standing in the portal. Air particles are then analyzed and identified in seconds. If explosive or narcotic compounds are detected, the machine alarms. However, it was found that dirt, debris and humidity render these machines useless in the real world.
These machines have been pulled from service and are now sitting in a warehouse. This $30 million blunder continues to cause problems for TSA, who according to NBC5 News, has confirmed these findings.