Answer to Question #10697 Submitted to "Ask the Experts"
Category: Security Screening — Airport Screening
The following question was answered by an expert in the appropriate field:
When shampoos and liquid body washes go through x-ray hand-baggage scanners at airports, does any radioactivity linger in the liquids that would be harmful? I've been abroad for a few months using giant containers from the states, and I just want to make sure that there's no reason for concern.
There is no lingering radioactivity in your shampoos or liquid washes (or anything else being scanned).
The x rays that are used to do the screening simply pass through the item being scanned, not causing anything to become radioactive. In some cases, if a material being scanned is dense enough, like a camera or laptop, some of the x rays are stopped by the more dense material, but still do not become radioactive.
Certified Medical Health Physicist