Image by SATIR

Officials in Chinese cities have started to deploy infrared sensors it says can scan passengers at railways and airports for signs of the coronavirus 2019-nCoV.

The system, developed by the tech giant Baidu, uses an infrared beam to measure passengers' temperatures as they walk, according to South China Morning Post. If it finds anyone with a fever, that person could then be flagged and potentially not permitted to travel, thus limiting the ongoing outbreak.

The temperature-recording sensors are just one of the many high-tech ways that Chinese officials are trying to prevent the coronavirus epidemic from getting any worse.

Hospitals in Shanghai, for instance, are using cleaning robots to disinfect wards dedicated to 2019-nCoV patients so as to keep it from spreading to at-risk patients elsewhere in the hospital, according to SCMP.

They've also started to use AI chatbots to answer the phone and rapidly dispense recommendations that people either come in for screening or stay isolated in their home.

"Big data and AI is not only instrumental in increasing city management efficiency and health care breakthroughs during public emergency events [like this]," Baidu founder and CEO Robin Li wrote in an internal letter verified by SCMP, "but can also empower all industries and become a driving force."