BTF Selection Process Chooses Innovative Projects
As reported in the last issue of The Scan, the BTF is actively promoting the identification and transition of biometric technology in the DoD by soliciting proposals and selecting projects to fund for development. This includes two Science & Technology-related initiatives: Biometric Technology Demonstrations (BTD) – sponsored by the BTF, and Biometrics Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) – sponsored by the Director, Defense Research & Engineering.
We reported last quarter that 30 BTD project proposals had been considered. Here is a list of the five selected for funding this fiscal year:
- Communications-Electronics Research, Development, and Engineering Center (CERDEC) Command and Control Directorate (C2D) will prototype and test its Biometric Identification & Notification Services (BINS), to provide the Warfighter with a means to analyze and verify biometric data captured in theater, in near-real time;
- Space Warfare Systems Center (SPAWARSYSCEN) Charleston will implement a “Face Recognition at a Distance” capability to the existing Biometric Inmate Tracking System (BITS) current in use at the Naval Consolidated Brig Charleston;
- Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) / U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) are jointly sponsoring the development and testing of a DoD “Identity Enrollment System”, to capture biometrics and identity documents, and to generate a unique identifier for non-Common Access Card (CAC)-eligible personnel requiring access;
- Armament Research Engineering and Development Center (ARDEC), will build and test an “Iris Recognition at Distance” system (3-6 meter range) in an operational environment; and,
- Army Research Office (ARO) will test and validate a Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) “Interoperable Biometric Fusion Platform” technology for use with large and disparate databases (using output data only), and establish a best practices and framework for implementation.
Solicitations for the FY09 BTDs will take place in July and August 08.
The second initiative is the Biometrics Broad Agency Announcement (BAA). The fiscal year 2008 Biometrics BAA specifically requested proposals for unique and innovative research for biometric identification research. Of the 175 proposals, 10 have been selected for funding. Below are the organizations that received an award and the title of their project:
- Aoptix for “Development of an Advanced Hand-held Iris Biometric Imager Brassboard and Demonstration”
- Cross Match Technologies for “Multi-Biometric Fusion”
- Digital Signal Corporation for “A Daytime/Nighttime Long Range Multi-biometric System for Military Operations”
- Noblis for “Multispectral Iris Fusion for Enhancement and Interoperability”
- Flashscan3D LLC for a “Miniature, Non-contact, Rolled Equivalent Fingerprint Collection Device using Structured Light Illumination”
- Honeywell for “Acquiring High-Quality Iris Images from Moving Subjects with a Fluttering Shutter”
- Sarnoff Corporation for “High Speed Iris Biometric Capture”
- The United States Naval Academy for a “Novel Long Range Illuminator”
- Syntronics for a “Syntronics LatentMaster Fingerprint Workstation”
- University of Houston for “Face Recognition for Physical and Logical Access Control: Demonstration and Assessment”
The BAA is intended to remain open for two years to allow for additional efforts as funding permits. Solicitations for the FY09 Biometrics BAA are scheduled to begin this September.
Also noteworthy is the development of a Biometrics S&T Strategy, an ongoing effort being sponsored by the Director, Defense Biometrics. MITRE Corporation is working with the BTF and the service S&T organizations to develop the S&T Strategy, which will fall within the umbrella of the DoD Biometrics Enterprise Strategy. Once complete, the BTF will begin development of the Biometrics S&T Plan and S&T Roadmap, also in conjunction with the services and agencies within DoD. Together, these documents will provide guidance to the DoD S&T community that will shape biometric S&T efforts and provide our warfighters and business users with the future capabilities they require to meet their mission.