3D X-ray technology is being deployed to increase the effectiveness of biosecurity screening at the national border.

Speaking at the Plant Biosecurity Research Symposium, Joel Willis, Principal Director of Detection Capability and Emerging Technology in Biosecurity Operations Division at DAWE, said 6m long 3D X-ray machines are being deployed to check baggage at airports for risky material.

He said the technology would greatly improve identification of fruit and meat in bags and parcels in real time, by allowing officers to rotate images and zoom in and out, to see more detail in the image captured.

Results to date indicate the 3D X-ray machines are two to three times more effective than 2D machines in being able to identify risky material.

An important part of this technology is the deployment of fruit, meat, fish, plant and animal machine learning algorithms, and the continual refinement of these algorithms through constant machine learning.

And in some of our key mail centres, these 3D X-ray units have proven crucial in decreasing the number of false positives, saving time for biosecurity officers.

A 3D X-ray machine.