ASU to Use Thermal Scanning Technology to Screen for COVID-19

There’s new technology popping up on Alabama State University’s campus to screen students and faculty for possible COVID-19 symptoms.

Screening stations are being set up to scan their vital signs and warn them when they’re not social distancing.

ASU president Quinton Ross said Tuesday that eventually there will be five pairs of the symptom screening stations.

One tool uses video feed to calculate whether students  are maintaining safe social distance while walking or standing in the busy student center and food court.

Another thermal screening, uses cameras to quickly checks for fever and other vital signs like normal heart rate and respiratory rate from a couple of feet away.

The screening takes about 15 seconds or less, but is not mandatory Ross said.  If the readings were to come back abnormal or “in the red” its up to students, faculty and guest to then self-report any symptoms.

“It was voluntary for students to come back to school Ross explained “so we don’t want to make this a situation where we are forcing people”.

Each thermal scanner costs about $20,000, and the social distancing “station” costs about $10,000. They are manufactured by the company, Draganfly.  ASU is the first college campus to utilize the technology.  The stations at ASU are paid for through money received from the CARES Act.

Categories: Montgomery, News