The impact of aviation checkpoint queues on optimizing security screening effectiveness

Adrian J. Lee, Sheldon H. Jacobson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Passenger screening at aviation security checkpoints is a critical component in protecting airports and aircraft from terrorist threats. Recent developments in screening device technology have increased the ability to detect these threats; however, the average amount of time it takes to screen a passenger still remains a concern. This paper models the queueing process for a multi-level airport checkpoint security system, where multiple security classes are formed through subsets of specialized screening devices. An optimal static assignment policy is obtained which minimizes the steady-state expected amount of time a passenger spends in the security system. Then, an optimal dynamic assignment policy is obtained through a transient analysis that balances the expected number of true alarms with the expected amount of time a passenger spends in the security system. Performance of a two-class system is compared to that of a selective security system containing primary and secondary levels of screening. The key contribution is that the resulting optimal assignment policies increase security and passenger throughput by efficiently and effectively utilizing available screening resources.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)900-911
Number of pages12
JournalReliability Engineering and System Safety
Volume96
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011

Keywords

  • Aviation security
  • Multi-objective optimization
  • Passenger screening
  • Queueing theory
  • Stochastic systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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