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CBRNE | Detection

General Dynamics Awarded U.S. Army Mission Training Support Contract

FAIRFAX, VA. - General Dynamics Information Technology, a business unitof General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), was awarded the Mission Training Complex Capabilities Support contract by the U.S. Army Contracting Command. The
multiple award, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract has a ceiling value of approximately $975 million with a five year ordering period.

 Work under the contract will consist of simulation and training support including live, virtual, constructive and first-person gaming exercises.
Additional support will include technical, logistical and administrative services for designated mission training complexes.

 "As a leader in mission-command and integrated training capabilities,
General Dynamics is well positioned to support the active Army and the
National Guard in strengthening readiness," said Rich Farinacci, vice
president and general manager of General Dynamics Information
Technology's Professional Services and Training Solutions sector.

 For more than ten years, General Dynamics has supported the Army's
mission training complexes with integrated training capabilities. The
company continues to be a trusted partner in supporting the Department
of Defense and other federal agencies as a primary source of training,
network and system engineering, installation, maintenance and logistical
services.

 For more information about General Dynamics Information Technology,
please visit www.gdit.com [1].



Links:
------
[1] https://gdit.com/

TSA Awards Integrated Defense and Security Solutions (IDSS) a $4.4 Million Base Contract for Further Development of the DETECT™ 1000 Dual Energy Computed Tomography Checkpoint Screening System

ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 29, 2017 -- Integrated Defense and Security Solutions, IDSS, today announced that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has awarded a base contract, valued at approximately $4.4 million for a 12-month development effort related to the new TSA Accessible Property Screening System (APSS).  Under the contract, TSA will acquire several prototypes of the DETECT™ 1000 screening system with support, and options to purchase additional prototype systems in the future.

In parallel, since June, TSA has been demonstrating the DETECT™ 1000 operationally at Boston's Logan Airport.  Several other U.S. and international customers have also obtained IDSS systems for operational evaluation.

This award complements several other development contracts IDSS has recently been awarded by other agencies. These contracts, totaling over $8 million in funding, are with other government agencies for systems and for adding new capabilities to the DETECT™ 1000 to automate the detection of certain threat types, as well as to develop new solutions for other security applications.

"The IDSS team is comprised of a number of security technology experts that are responsible for many of the systems in use by TSA and overseas customers today. This new contract will further expand the benefits from our DETECT™ 1000 technology to counter the serious and growing threats to the aviation industry," said Joe Paresi, IDSS CEO. "We are focused on supporting the TSA and our international customers with the most advanced automated screening solution available and appreciate TSA's recognition of our capabilities to bring Next Generation technology to airport checkpoints to improve threat detection and increase passenger throughput, while also making the screening process much more convenient for all passengers."

"We regard the TSA as the world's leading authority on aviation security.  We view this new contract as another important step toward providing the most advanced means to protect passengers against attempts against our freedom and way of life," said Jeffery Hamel, President of IDSS Security. "To us, this award is continued recognition of the incredible talent and commitment of the IDSS engineering team."

For more information, please visit www.idsscorp.net



About Integrated Defense and Security Solutions
Founded in 2012 by experienced security technology developers, IDSS is focused on delivering high performance, next generation security systems to replace the existing manual detection approach of X-ray based systems, currently in use at most airports worldwide.

IDSS designed the DETECT™ 1000 to meet the operational requirements of today's threats with the ability to expand its capabilities as threats continue to evolve.

To learn more about IDSS, please visit the company's website at www.idsscorp.net.  

IDSS is headquartered in New York with engineering and production facilities in Boxborough, Massachusetts.  For more information, visit www.IDSScorp.net.

IDSS and the logo are registered trademarks of IDSS Corporation. DETECT™ 1000 is a trademark of IDSS Corporation.

For Further Information:

Contact: Pat Krall
IDSS Director, Business Operations
914-273-4000 [email protected]    

SOURCE IDSS

Related Links

http://www.idsscorp.net

Border Patrol Nov. 27- Discovers Meth in Pickup’s Gas Tank

Release Date: November 27, 2017, SALTON CITY, Calif., – El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the Highway 86 checkpoint, arrested a man suspected of smuggling methamphetamine inside his pickup’s gas tank on Friday morning.
The incident occurred at approximately 11:40 a.m., when a 66-year-old man approached the checkpoint in a 2003 Chevy Silverado. Before the driver reached the primary inspection area, a Border Patrol canine detection team alerted to the driver’s side of the vehicle.
Agents referred the man to secondary inspection for a closer inspection of his pickup.
Upon further inspection, Border Patrol agents found 74 packages stuffed inside the pickup’s gas tank. Agents tested the contents of the packages. That test indicated a positive for characteristics of methamphetamine.
The total weight of the methamphetamine was 77.22 pounds with an estimated street value of $270,270.
Gas tanks are a common hiding place drug traffickers use to smuggle their narcotics.
The man, a naturalized citizen, the vehicle and narcotics were turned-over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation.
In fiscal year 2018, El Centro Sector has seized more than 197.54 pounds of methamphetamine.

Agents Arrest Man for Smuggling Meth, Fentanyl
TUCSON, Ariz., November 27, 2017 – Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents working at the immigration checkpoint on Interstate 19 near Amado found more than 50 pounds of methamphetamine and multiple fentanyl pills in a Nissan sedan following a canine’s alert on Nov. 22.
Agents referred the driver, an 18-year-old man from Nogales, Arizona, for a secondary inspection of the vehicle after a Border Patrol canine alerted to an odor it was trained to detect. As a result, agents found multiple packages of meth, worth in excess of $162,000, and more than half a pound of fentanyl valued at nearly $12,000.
Agents arrested the driver for narcotics smuggling and seized the sedan and its contents.
According to information posted on DEA.gov, Fentanyl is a potent synthetic opioid, prescribed for severe chronic pain, or breakthrough pain, to patients who are already receiving opioid medication. It is considered to be about 100 times more potent than morphine.

Border Patrol Arrests Convicted Sex Offender and MS-13 Gang Member
OCOTILLO, Calif., November 27, 2017 – U.S. Border Patrol agents assigned to the El Centro Sector arrested two potentially dangerous men, a previously deported sex offender and an MS-13 gang member, who illegally entered the United States Friday morning.
The first incident happened at approximately 5:15 a.m., when Border Patrol agents patrolling approximately 22 miles west of the Calexico Port of Entry, encountered a man who was illegally present in the United States.
Agents arrested the man and transported him to the El Centro Station for processing.
Agents conducted record checks which revealed that the man had a previous notice to appear from San Jose, CA for lewd acts with a child under 14.
The man a 44-year-old Mexican citizen, will be removed to his country of origin.
The second incident occurred at approximately 1:15 p.m., when Border Patrol agents patrolling 11 miles west of the Calexico Port of Entry, encountered a man who had illegally entered the United States.
Border Patrol agents arrested the man and transported him to the El Centro Station for processing.
After agents conducted record checks they were able to identify that the man had a previous record with affiliation to the MS-13 gang from Honduras.
The man was removed in 2010 and will be processed as a Reinstatement of previous removal.
The man, a 24-year-old Honduras citizen, will be removed to his country of origin.

Armed Mexican Smuggler Arrested near Gila Bend
TUCSON, Ariz., November 27, 2017 – Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents from the Ajo Station seized a Dodge minivan and a handgun Sunday after identifying the driver and three passengers as Mexican nationals illegally present in the United States.
Agents stopped the minivan on westbound Interstate 8, outside of Gila Bend, Arizona, Sunday afternoon to conduct an immigration inspection.  While questioning the occupants, agents determined all individuals were Mexican nationals who had entered the country illegally.
During a subsequent search of the vehicle, agents discovered a 9mm pistol and ammunition, belonging to the driver.
In addition to seizing the vehicle and weapon, agents arrested the four occupants for immigration violations, in accordance with Tucson Sector guidelines. The driver will also be presented for prosecution and could face additional charges for his role in the smuggling attempt, as well as for illegal possession of a firearm.

Agents Arrest Illegal Alien Convicted of Rape
TUCSON, Ariz, November 27, 2017 – Border Patrol agents from the Tucson Station apprehended a 40-year-old Mexican man in the desert near Sasabe, Arizona, on Saturday afternoon for illegally entering the United States.
While processing Juan Sotelo-Carasco, agents conducted a records check and learned he was convicted and sentenced in 2016 for rape in Contra Costa County, California.
Sotelo is being held in federal custody pending prosecution for felony criminal immigration violations.

Huawei and Gemalto team up to accelerate NarrowBand IoT deployments

Amsterdam, – To help device manufacturers meet a growing demand for long-lasting low-power NarrowBand (NB) IoT modules, Gemalto and Huawei – via its semiconductor arm, HiSilicon – are working together to develop the next generation of modules that combine an extra level of security and consume very low power. By combining the expertise from both companies, these NB-IoT modules will help manufacturers reduce the cost and size of their devices, and lengthen the battery life of the devices to up to ten years. 

NB IoT has been developed to address lower bit rates and lower cost segments, and works virtually anywhere. It offers ultra-low power consumption enabling devices to be battery operated for periods of up to 10 years. Applications include smart parking sensors, intruder and fire alarms, personal healthcare appliances, tracking devices, and street lamps to name a few. According to ABI Research, NB IoT modulesconnecting objects to networks are forecast to represent over 20% of all cellular shipments by 2021. 

"2017 is the year of commercial NB IoT rollouts for us, and we will be building 30 such networks in 20 countries worldwide by the end of the year. Huawei has been a major player in this arena, and we continue to capitalize on this vast opportunity," said XiongWei, president of LTE solution, Huawei. "We look to supply the market with solutions that provide stable connectivity, low energy consumption, and cost efficiency. The network roll-out will now come with an enhanced integration and flexibility thanks to this collaboration with Gemalto." 

"The combination of our expertise in IOT cellular connectivity, and digital s​ecurity, and Huawei's high-performance NB IoT chipsets will help device manufacturers and service providers take the plunge into cellular IoT mass deployment thanks to a standardized solution," said Suzanne Tong-Li, SVP Greater China and Korea for Mobile Services and IoT and China President, Gemalto. "Our collaboration simplifies the implementatio​​​n of NB IoT projects combining solid security and flexibility."

About Gemalto

Gemalto (Euronext NL0000400653 GTO) is the global leader in digital security, with 2016 annual revenues of €3.1 billion and customers in over 180 countries. We bring trust to an increasingly connected world.

From secure software to biometrics and encryption, our technologies and services enable businesses and governments to authenticate identities and protect data so they stay safe and enable services in personal devices, connected objects, the cloud and in between.

Gemalto’s solutions are at the heart of modern life, from payment to enterprise security and the internet of things. We authenticate people, transactions and objects, encrypt data and create value for software – enabling our clients to deliver secure digital services for billions of individuals and things.

Our 15,000+ employees operate out of 112 offices, 43 personalization and data centers, and 30 research and software development centers located in 48 countries.

 

Global Military Radar Systems Market Worth USD 14.46 Billion by 2024: Hexa Research

The global military radar systems market to reach USD 14.46 billion by 2024, driven by the rising need for improving safety and security on the borders and rising conflicts among neighboring nations. North America was the largest regional market commanding the highest revenue share in 2016 and is expected to maintain its dominance over the forecast period.

The region is home to many active vendors such as Raytheon Company and Northrop Grumman Corporation in the defense market at large. Rise in investment activities, especially in developing countries such as China and India to strengthen their armies is expected to boost the military radars systems market over the forecast period.
The ground-based radar platform dominated the market owing to its uses and applications in surveillance and weapon guidance. The segment is expected to continue to dominate the market over the forecast period as well. Airborne radars are widely used for guiding missiles and for tracing accurate and precise targets. Naval radars are expected to follow a similar growth trajectory with an expected increase in demand over the forecast period.
Growing safety and security concerns with the nations along with rising investments and defense budgets are expected to spur growth in military radar systems market. Technological advancements in the military radar systems industry are leading to the growth and development of lightweight military radars which is projected to add to the growth of the market over the forecast period.

Browse full research report with TOC on "Military Radar Systems Market Size and Forecast, By Platform (Ground-Based, Naval, Airborne, Space-based), By Application (Weapon guidance, Surveillance), And Segment Forecasts, 2014 - 2024" at: https://www.hexaresearch.com/research-report/military-radar-systems-market
The military radar systems market is estimated to witness growth in demand owing to the escalation in terrorist activities, border intrusions, and inter-country conflicts. Military radars are used for accurate and precise detection, surveillance, tracking, warning, and ground mapping of weapons and aircraft in the war zone.
While the market for military radar systems is expected to grow over the forecast period, it remains susceptible to the prevailing economic situations. The result of economic slowdown has affected military spending in many countries, hindering the growth opportunities for defense market at large.
European countries, such as Germany, UK, and Russia have observed cut down in defense expenditure owing to the financial crises and macroeconomic conditions. Furthermore, the development of space-based radars involves considerable expenditure on R&D activities, engineering, and production.

Browse reports of similar category by Hexa Research:
    •    Commercial Telematics Market - Global Commercial telematics market size was estimated to be worth USD 17.54 billion in 2016. Technological advancements such as real-time engine diagnostics, GPS tracking, fatigue alert, and drive lane assist are expected to boost the market.
    •    Mobile Satellite Services Market - Global mobile satellite services market size is expected to reach USD 5.53 billion by 2024. The growing demand for communication devices which provide services such as sending and receiving data from any remote location is the key factor that has been driving the market.
    •    Home Automation Market - Global home automation market size was USD 17.48 billion in 2016 and is expected to grow over the forecast period. The market is being primarily driven by increasing awareness for less energy consumption, the rise in electricity prices, and advancement in technology.
    •    Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) Market - Global software defined data center market size was valued at USD 26.33 billion in 2016 and is expected to grow owing to its benefits such as advances in networking capability, reduction in storage cost, virtualization and high flexibility.


Hexa Research has segmented the global military radar systems market based on platform, application and region:

Segmentation by platform, 2014 - 2024 (USD Billion)

• Ground-Based
• Naval
• Airborne
• Space-based

Segmentation by application, 2014 - 2024 (USD Billion)

• Weapon guidance system
• Surveillance

Segmentation by region, 2014 - 2024 (USD Billion)

• North America
    • U.S.
• Asia Pacific
    • China
    • India
• Europe
    • France
    • UK

Key players analyzed

• Lockheed Martin Corporation
• Boeing
• Northrop Grumman Corporation
• Raytheon Company
• Saab Sensis Corporation
• BAE System PLC
• Airbus Group
• General Dynamics Corporation
• Leonardo DRS
• Harris Corporation

About Hexa Research
Hexa Research is a market research and consulting organization, offering industry reports, custom research and consulting services to a host of key industries across the globe. We offer comprehensive business intelligence in the form of industry reports which help our clients obtain clarity about their business environment and enable them to undertake strategic growth initiatives.

Smiths Detection Receives Order for Vehicle Scanning Technologies From U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Edgewood, MD –  Smiths Detection Inc. (SDI) announces orders totaling $7.1 million for HCVM e35 NA and ScanVan technologies under existing indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contracts with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

Smiths Detection’s ScanVan is a small, easily maneuvered vehicle, fitted with HI-SCAN 100100T technology, a state-of-the-art X-ray system capable of scanning objects such as cargo, strollers, boxes or electronics. It is specially designed for the needs of customs facilities, airports, transport operators, and couriers - or wherever temporary high-security checkpoints are required.

The HCVM e35 NA is a fully integrated mobile solution used to inspect whole trucks, containers and vehicles. Utilizing state-of-the-art software platforms to provide detailed X-ray image views, customizable image options, and comparison tools to enhance screening outcome, it screens for contraband and threats such as explosives, narcotics, and weapons. The solutions also help operators to reduce screening times and increase data collection capability.  

Stephen Esposito, Vice President of Business Development and Sales, said, “Smiths Detection’s advanced technology, reputation for custom solutions, responsiveness, and reliable service  have helped us to become long-term providers for agencies around the world. Our experience allows us to continue to work closely with CBP to provide world-leading solutions that help to protect our borders and secure locations across the country.”

For more information, please visit www.smithsdetection.com

###

Environmental Assessment of Proposed Tracer Particle and Biological Releases for the Hazards of Dynamic Outdoor Release (HODOR) Project

Oct. 2017, This Environmental Assessment (EA) documents the analysis of the potential effects of a proposal by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science & Technology Directorate (S&T) to conduct tests during January/February 2018 and then again during June/July, 2018 involving the release of low concentrations of particles at two buildings within the Chilocco Indian Agricultural School (Chilocco campus) in Newkirk, Kay County, OK. The S&T program is entitled the Hazards of Dynamic Outdoor Releases (HODOR). No construction, permanent land disturbance, or land use changes would occur with implementation of the Proposed Action or the Alternatives.
The HODOR program supports DHS’s strategic goals to detect and recover from biological attacks and inform and support biodefense planning, response, and restoration, particularly in consequence/risk assessment modeling of the indoor hazards posed by outdoor aerosols. Characterizing the impact of biological weapons on infrastructure is a key element to achieving this goal. One indicator of a building’s ability to withstand the effects of a biological weapon is the building protection factor (BPF). The BPF is the degree to which a building’s occupants are protected from biological materials as compared to a person located outside the building. Dispersion models have been created to help in these endeavors and are actively used by agencies within DHS for both pre- and post-attack planning. Pre-attack planning includes identifying strategies for response in the event of a biological attack. Post-attack planning includes determining the source location for attribution, identifying exposed people, and aiding the remediation effort (e.g., mapping, decontamination). While the dispersion models are critically important for homeland defense, the lack of quantitative evidence and understanding of the BPF is a significant gap. Selection of specific buildings that are representative of U.S. construction for homes and apartments was conducted to support this effort. This EA is being conducted in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) in 40 CFR 1500- 1508, and DHS Directive 023-01, Implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act. In support of these tests, aerosol biologists from Sandia National Laboratory, aerosol engineers from the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center (NBACC), scientists from the OSU-University Multispectral Laboratories (UML), and other supporting state and federal agencies have partnered for the proposed testing. The assembled team has conducted a thorough review of available literature to assess the potential for environmental hazards associated with the proposed program. Specifically, an analysis of alternatives was conducted to select appropriate buildings for testing, best inert materials, and optimal biological material for release to successfully meet program objectives.
Buildings to be used for testing were selected based on the DHS-desired characteristics, as well as the ability to release materials at a distance from these buildings that minimize environmental impact and public exposure.
Action alternatives were considered for testing location and testing materials. A total of five abandoned residential and apartment buildings within the Chilocco campus were evaluated against two main criteria: conformance to typical US building standards; and potential testing obstructions (e.g. vegetation, proximity to other buildings).
Residential Building Alternative 1 (Building 53) and Residential Building Alternative 2 (Building 56) both contain numerous vegetation and building obstructions and would require major renovations to meet current typical building standards. Residential Building Alternative 3 (Building 58) has the fewest number of potentially obscuring structures and required minor renovations.
Apartment Building Alternative 1 (Building 10) did not realistically represent current apartment building design or utilize standard heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Apartment Building Alternative 2 (Building 60), more realistically simulated a typical apartment structure with multiple HVAC systems, thus allowing more accurate testing conditions. The No Action Building Alternative would result in no real-world testing scenario, and would not meet the stated purpose and need.
The use of inert particulate materials provides extremely valuable information toward the overall objectives of the HODOR program. Inert materials will be used to monitor gross particle movement around and into each building, in real time, using relatively simple and straightforward sensors. The data collected with inert particle materials will be used to optimize sensor placement for subsequent biological particulate releases. Two different inert particulates were selected to be employed for use in gross characterization of particle penetration into buildings. Alternative Inert Particle 1 would utilize titanium dioxide (TiO2), a white odorless powder that is chemically insoluble in water, nonreactive, nonflammable, and nonhazardous. This material is not regulated or defined as a toxic or hazardous material.
Alternative Inert Particle 2 is a 90:10% mixture of urea powder with CL Fluorescent Brightener 220. Urea serves an important role in the metabolism of nitrogen-containing compounds by animals and is the main nitrogen-containing substance in the urine of mammals. CL Fluorescent Brightener 220 is a finishing reagent in textiles, and up to 2% by weight in laundry detergents.
Both aerosol particulates would be released and detected by sensors located outside and inside the preferred buildings. At the concentrations resulting from the proposed releases, all materials are considered nontoxic and nonhazardous. The No Action Alternative would result in no release of aerosol particulates. This alternative would result in possible missed biological sensors detections, reducing the likelihood of program success. In addition, it would increase the number of barcoded biological material releases and would require additional labor to decontaminate each site between releases. These factors would increase both programmatic cost and time and is not a preferred alternative.
To understand the true detection capabilities of the biological sensor, challenge tests with a material must be performed. Since a portion of the technologies rely on the detection of genetic or proteinaceous materials to positively identify a particular threat agent, the simulant must be of biological origin. Three alternatives were considered in order to evaluate tradeoffs in test procedures, which would either partially meet the needs of DHS S&T; additionally there is a no action alternative, which would involve no particulate releases.
Alternative Biological Particulate 1 would employ the use of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp kurstaki (Btk) barcoded spores, which are the preferred biological material to be employed for sensitive characterization of building penetration. Native Btk, sold under the commercial name of Dipel, is used extensively as a bioinsecticide and is not considered a hazard by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) when handled appropriately. The barcoded variant provides much more specific detection and identification from background than the native organism, as it contains a genetic barcode that does not affect any physiological function or phenotypic expression of the organism. It will be dispersed in a similar manner to that of native Btk when used as an insecticide. However, release will be at much lower concentrations than typical insecticidal application rates. The use of the barcoded Btk has been approved for use in this program by the State of Oklahoma’s Department of Agriculture, Food, & Forestry.
Alternative Biological Particulate 2 would utilize native Btk, without barcoding. Native Btk is an approved biopesticide under the commercial name of Dipel. This alternative would require much more time and labor to execute. Alternative Biological Particulate 3 would employ a tagged, inert, fluorescent particle known as DNATrax. The safety of DNATrax particles cannot be assumed, therefore, its use presented unknown risks not conducive to testing objectives. The release of all three biological particulate alternatives would result in slow application rates and low concentrations. No Action Biological Particulate Alternative would still allow the primary objectives of the tests to be met through use of inert particles only, but would require larger quantities of inert powder to overcome the natural background of particulates internal and external to the building. In order to simulate real world data that more closely matches, releases of an actual biological nature is needed.
The Chilocco campus and surrounding land is under the ownership of the Council of Confederated Chilocco Tribes (CCCT) which include the Kaw Nation, the Otoe-Missouria Tribe, the Pawnee Nation, the Ponca Nation, and the Tonkawa Tribe. The campus is abandoned, thus reducing the risk of potential human health and safety risks posed by the presence of sensitive populations. S&T and UML have been in communication with the Bureau of Indian Affairs and CCCT and have determined that the implementation of the preferred alternatives has no adverse impact on resources, human health or the environment.
The direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental effects caused by the potential exposure of terrestrial wildlife, vegetation, water resources, and air quality by movement of the material by any of the alternatives would not have an adverse effect. This is due to both selection of the test materials and limited quantity that will be used. The Chilocco campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Consultation with the appropriate Tribal Historic Preservation Officers has been initiated, and no adverse effect is anticipated.
This EA details the approach and reasoning the team would employ to minimize environmental impacts. As can been seen in the body of this document, the buildings to be used, their location, the release locations and the amounts and types of materials to be used all serve to
minimize impact to the surrounding environment. S&T has determined that the proposed testing would have no potential for significant impact on the human environment and that an environmental impact statement is not needed.

 

Executive Summary, Prepared for Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate

Environmental Assessment of Proposed Tracer Particle and Biological Releases for the Hazards of Dynamic Outdoor Release (HODOR) Project

Prepared for Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate

Executive Summary
This Environmental Assessment (EA) documents the analysis of the potential effects of a proposal by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science & Technology Directorate (S&T) to conduct tests during January/February 2018 and then again during June/July, 2018 involving the release of low concentrations of particles at two buildings within the Chilocco Indian Agricultural School (Chilocco campus) in Newkirk, Kay County, OK. The S&T program is entitled the Hazards of Dynamic Outdoor Releases (HODOR). No construction, permanent land disturbance, or land use changes would occur with implementation of the Proposed Action or the Alternatives.
The HODOR program supports DHS’s strategic goals to detect and recover from biological attacks and inform and support biodefense planning, response, and restoration, particularly in consequence/risk assessment modeling of the indoor hazards posed by outdoor aerosols. Characterizing the impact of biological weapons on infrastructure is a key element to achieving this goal. One indicator of a building’s ability to withstand the effects of a biological weapon is the building protection factor (BPF). The BPF is the degree to which a building’s occupants are protected from biological materials as compared to a person located outside the building. Dispersion models have been created to help in these endeavors and are actively used by agencies within DHS for both pre- and post-attack planning. Pre-attack planning includes identifying strategies for response in the event of a biological attack. Post-attack planning includes determining the source location for attribution, identifying exposed people, and aiding the remediation effort (e.g., mapping, decontamination). While the dispersion models are critically important for homeland defense, the lack of quantitative evidence and understanding of the BPF is a significant gap. Selection of specific buildings that are representative of U.S. construction for homes and apartments was conducted to support this effort. This EA is being conducted in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) in 40 CFR 1500- 1508, and DHS Directive 023-01, Implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act. In support of these tests, aerosol biologists from Sandia National Laboratory, aerosol engineers from the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center (NBACC), scientists from the OSU-University Multispectral Laboratories (UML), and other supporting state and federal agencies have partnered for the proposed testing. The assembled team has conducted a thorough review of available literature to assess the potential for environmental hazards associated with the proposed program. Specifically, an analysis of alternatives was conducted to select appropriate buildings for testing, best inert materials, and optimal biological material for release to successfully meet program objectives.


Buildings to be used for testing were selected based on the DHS-desired characteristics, as well as the ability to release materials at a distance from these buildings that minimize environmental impact and public exposure.
Action alternatives were considered for testing location and testing materials. A total of five abandoned residential and apartment buildings within the Chilocco campus were evaluated
against two main criteria: conformance to typical US building standards; and potential testing obstructions (e.g. vegetation, proximity to other buildings).


Residential Building Alternative 1 (Building 53) and Residential Building Alternative 2 (Building 56) both contain numerous vegetation and building obstructions and would require major renovations to meet current typical building standards. Residential Building Alternative 3 (Building 58) has the fewest number of potentially obscuring structures and required minor renovations.


Apartment Building Alternative 1 (Building 10) did not realistically represent current apartment building design or utilize standard heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Apartment Building Alternative 2 (Building 60), more realistically simulated a typical apartment structure with multiple HVAC systems, thus allowing more accurate testing conditions. The No Action Building Alternative would result in no real-world testing scenario, and would not meet the stated purpose and need.


The use of inert particulate materials provides extremely valuable information toward the overall objectives of the HODOR program. Inert materials will be used to monitor gross particle movement around and into each building, in real time, using relatively simple and straightforward sensors. The data collected with inert particle materials will be used to optimize sensor placement for subsequent biological particulate releases. Two different inert particulates were selected to be employed for use in gross characterization of particle penetration into buildings. Alternative Inert Particle 1 would utilize titanium dioxide (TiO2), a white odorless powder that is chemically insoluble in water, nonreactive, nonflammable, and nonhazardous. This material is not regulated or defined as a toxic or hazardous material.


Alternative Inert Particle 2 is a 90:10% mixture of urea powder with CL Fluorescent Brightener 220. Urea serves an important role in the metabolism of nitrogen-containing compounds by animals and is the main nitrogen-containing substance in the urine of mammals. CL Fluorescent Brightener 220 is a finishing reagent in textiles, and up to 2% by weight in laundry detergents.


Both aerosol particulates would be released and detected by sensors located outside and inside the preferred buildings. At the concentrations resulting from the proposed releases, all materials are considered nontoxic and nonhazardous. The No Action Alternative would result in no release of aerosol particulates. This alternative would result in possible missed biological sensors detections, reducing the likelihood of program success. In addition, it would increase the number of barcoded biological material releases and would require additional labor to decontaminate each site between releases. These factors would increase both programmatic cost and time and is not a preferred alternative.


To understand the true detection capabilities of the biological sensor, challenge tests with a material must be performed. Since a portion of the technologies rely on the detection of genetic or proteinaceous materials to positively identify a particular threat agent, the simulant must be of biological origin. Three alternatives were considered in order to evaluate tradeoffs in test procedures, which would either partially meet the needs of DHS S&T; additionally there is a no action alternative, which would involve no particulate releases.
Alternative Biological Particulate 1 would employ the use of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp kurstaki (Btk) barcoded spores, which are the preferred biological material to be employed for sensitive characterization of building penetration. Native Btk, sold under the commercial name of Dipel, is used extensively as a bioinsecticide and is not considered a hazard by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) when handled appropriately. The barcoded variant provides much more specific detection and identification from background than the native organism, as it contains a genetic barcode that does not affect any physiological function or phenotypic expression of the organism. It will be dispersed in a similar manner to that of native Btk when used as an insecticide. However, release will be at much lower concentrations than typical insecticidal application rates. The use of the barcoded Btk has been approved for use in this program by the State of Oklahoma’s Department of Agriculture, Food, & Forestry.


Alternative Biological Particulate 2 would utilize native Btk, without barcoding. Native Btk is an approved biopesticide under the commercial name of Dipel. This alternative would require much more time and labor to execute. Alternative Biological Particulate 3 would employ a tagged, inert, fluorescent particle known as DNATrax. The safety of DNATrax particles cannot be assumed, therefore, its use presented unknown risks not conducive to testing objectives. The release of all three biological particulate alternatives would result in slow application rates and low concentrations. No Action Biological Particulate Alternative would still allow the primary objectives of the tests to be met through use of inert particles only, but would require larger quantities of inert powder to overcome the natural background of particulates internal and external to the building. In order to simulate real world data that more closely matches, releases of an actual biological nature is needed.
The Chilocco campus and surrounding land is under the ownership of the Council of Confederated Chilocco Tribes (CCCT) which include the Kaw Nation, the Otoe-Missouria Tribe, the Pawnee Nation, the Ponca Nation, and the Tonkawa Tribe. The campus is abandoned, thus reducing the risk of potential human health and safety risks posed by the presence of sensitive populations. S&T and UML have been in communication with the Bureau of Indian Affairs and CCCT and have determined that the implementation of the preferred alternatives has no adverse impact on resources, human health or the environment.


The direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental effects caused by the potential exposure of terrestrial wildlife, vegetation, water resources, and air quality by movement of the material by any of the alternatives would not have an adverse effect. This is due to both selection of the test materials and limited quantity that will be used. The Chilocco campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Consultation with the appropriate Tribal Historic Preservation Officers has been initiated, and no adverse effect is anticipated.
This EA details the approach and reasoning the team would employ to minimize environmental impacts. As can been seen in the body of this document, the buildings to be used, their location, the release locations and the amounts and types of materials to be used all serve to minimize impact to the surrounding environment. S&T has determined that the proposed testing would have no potential for significant impact on the human environment and that an environmental impact statement is not needed.

exactEarth’s Small Vessel Tracking Service is now supported by the VMS Track-Pro from Weatherdock AG

Cambridge, ON –August 16, 2017 – exactEarth Ltd. (“exactEarth” or the “Company”) (TSX: XCT), a leading provider of Satellite AIS data services,announces that its exactTrax™ small vessel monitoring technology is now incorporated into the VMS Track-Pro, the newest Class B AIS transponder from Weatherdock AG of Nuremberg, Germany.

VMS Track-Pro is the world’s first single-bracket, battery powered and purpose-built AIS-based tracking solution, which makes it a secure, easy-to-use, and cost-effective solution for tracking fishing vessels and other small crafts. More than 15 years of research and development have gone into the production of VMS Track-Pro, which included extensive input and feedback from fishermen, as well as detailed analysis of homeland security requirements. The resulting data services, which combine the Class B AIS transponder with CML microprocessors and exactTrax technology, provide the ability to securely monitor the millions of artisanal and small-scale commercial fishing boats and small commercial work boats currently operating around the world.

This ability to monitor and track vessels equipped with exactTrax-enabled transceivers supports safety of life at sea and delivers an unrivalled picture into the world’s global maritime activity. Monitoring these vessels can also provide critical intelligence into a variety of marine applications such as fisheries protection, environmental preservation, and maritime surveillance/security through improved ‘dark’ target analysis.

“We recently announced that our exactTrax service is now available for integration with all AIS transceiver manufacturers and, as an internationally recognized supplier of high-quality AIS hardware, we couldn’t be more pleased to add Weatherdock to our growing list of suppliers,” said Peter Mabson, CEO of exactEarth. “Expanding our list of partners means that we can now reach even more potential users worldwide and offer customers real choice in their platform options.”

For more information, visit the exactTrax webpage.

About Weatherdock

Founded in 2003, Weatherdock AG is a privately owned German manufacturer of market-leading VHF-based tracking devices for maritime applications, including Search and Rescue Transmitters (SART) and vmsTRACK for coastal surveillance monitoring. Weatherdock’s products are currently distributed in more than 20 countries to a wide variety of prestigious customers including the German Navy, the Danish Navy, the Singapore Water Police, and the Dutch Rescue Organization. In 2016 as well as in 2017 (2nd time in a row) Weatherdock was recognized as one of Germany’s top 100 small and mid-sized companies. For more information, please visit www.easyAIS.com.

About exactEarth Ltd.

exactEarth is a leading provider of global maritime vessel data for ship tracking and maritime situational awareness solutions. Since its establishment in 2009, exactEarth has pioneered a powerful new method of maritime surveillance called Satellite AIS (“S-AIS”) and has delivered to its clients a view of maritime behaviours across all regions of the world’s oceans unrestricted by terrestrial limitations. exactEarth has deployed an operational data processing supply chain involving a constellation of satellites, receiving ground stations, patented decoding algorithms and advanced “big data” processing and distribution facilities. This ground-breaking system provides a comprehensive picture of the location of AIS equipped maritime vessels throughout the world and allows exactEarth to deliver data and information services characterized by high performance, reliability, security and simplicity to large international markets.  For more information, visit www.exactearth.com

Passport Systems releases latest version of radiation detection system software

NORTH BILLERICA, MA July 11, 2017 Passport Systems, Inc. today announced the release of version 2.0 of its SmartShield™ Networked Radiation Detection System software. In addition to its groundbreaking Analysis function, the SmartShield system now includes the SmartShield Source Simulation application that allows users to electronically inject a simulated radioactive source to provide a full fidelity simulation of an actual event.  For the first time, customers can train to find either a stationary or a moving source without deploying a physical source.

"This could change the game for how we train ConOps," said Tom Hughes, Director of Product Management for SmartShield Technology. "The SmartShield Source Simulation application enables hazmat units to train without the logistics of radiation sources, in public areas should they choose, using the equipment that they would use in day-to-day operations.  This type of training allows agencies to reevaluate and modify ConOps to meet the growing radiological threat."

The SmartShield system is comprised of small gamma-radiation detectors that collect radiation data and transmit the information wirelessly through smartphones, forming a network that allows security forces to simultaneously respond to any threats. While on patrol, security and law enforcement officers collect background radiation data. When gamma radiation is detected, an alert and GPS coordinates are sent throughout the network, to a central command station, and to responding law enforcement personnel.

The capabilities of the revolutionary SmartShield system have been expanded:

  • SmartShield Source Simulation, our all-new simulation tool.
  • Extended battery life.
  • Includes Analysis Mode, to compare previous radiation maps, and highlight changes in detected isotopes across the survey area.
  • Includes Replay Mode, to playback a previous survey, allowing for closer review of previous events.
  • Compatible with Samsung Galaxy S4, S6, and S7 phones.

These new capabilities are part of the continuing evolution of the SmartShield System, demonstrating that radiation detection technology does not have to be static and stagnant.  Making the software application stronger, less dependent on particular smartphone models is a move that will enable SmartShield technology to be platform independent in the future.

"The SmartShield system and source simulation application will continue to set the standard for the radiation detection industry," said Dr. Robert Ledoux, President, CEO, and Director of Passport Systems, Inc. "Together with our recent NCS4 lab evaluation, these expanded capabilities represent a dramatic growth in our ability to protect people and events."

In the United States, the SmartShield technology has been used to beef up security at the NCAA Final Four Basketball Tournament in Houston, at the Boston Marathon, and other crowd gathering events, such as NASCAR races in New Hampshire.  Internationally, it is being marketed for use at celebrations, soccer matches, concerts, as well as airports, and ports.

For more information on our SmartShield v2.0 software release, read more at http://bit.ly/2bIssjY 

About Passport Systems  
Passport Systems was founded to develop and commercialize new technologies to address the threats facing the world in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  Founded by a team of MIT technologists and entrepreneurs, Passport Systems has proudly developed two cutting-edge product lines: The SmartScan 3D™ Automated Cargo Inspection System, based on nuclear resonance fluorescence technology, and the SmartShield™ Networked Radiation Detection System, using advanced data fusion algorithms.  For further details on Passport Systems and its products and services, please visit www.passportsystems.com, and follow us on Twitter at @PassportSys and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/PassportSys/.

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