DHS to Hold Public-Safety Technology Evaluation Event in Houston
Tuesday, November 20, 2018 | Comments

Through a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA), the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) is partnering with industry to evaluate first responder technologies. DHS, industry partners and 13 local Houston-area public-safety agencies will integrate existing first responder technology with DHS-developed and commercial technology during a hazardous materials (HAZMAT) scenario.

The Next Generation First Responder (NGFR) – Harris County Operational Experimentation (OpEx) is scheduled to take place Dec. 4 – 5 at the port of Houston. DHS S&T and industry partners are providing technologies such as responder and patient physiological monitoring sensors, indoor location tracking, HAZMAT sensors, smart alerting for responders and incident command, advanced data analytics, and situational awareness and collaboration dashboards. The integration will use open standards from the NGFR Integration Handbook.

Several industry partners and their respective technology are included in this agreement. Ares Security and Command Bridge will provide first responder situational awareness. AT&T and Rocket IOT will provide communication for first response. Centrex Solutions and Night Jar will provide communication for first response, Compusult and Sensor Hub will provide sensor hub capabilities and Defense Industrial Base (DIB) Information Sharing Analysis Center (ISAC) LifeRing will provide situational awareness. Haystax Technology and Constellation, along with Intrepid Networks and Intrepid Response, will provide situational awareness. Keys Net and its technology Physiological Sensor will provide first responder physiological monitoring. MobileIron and SENSEI will provide mobile device management, and TRX Systems and NEON will provide indoor and outdoor location data for security, public-safety and industrial applications.

“Today’s first responders must have advanced technology to communicate and provide situational awareness as they face dangerous and evolving threats,” said William N. Bryan, senior official performing the duties of the under secretary for S&T. “Most importantly, these next-generation technologies need to be interoperable in coordinated response efforts.”

The OpEx will also evaluate technology from the following DHS partner performers: Pacific Northwest National Labs and its VitalTag patient monitoring technology, NASA Jet Propulsion Lab’s AUDREY artificial intelligence and situational awareness technology, and Ardent MC’s FRESH Router to implement data standards of the NGFR architecture.

“The CRADA provides DHS and industry partners the opportunity to learn about the interoperability and integration requirements of a coordinated urban response,” said Sridhar Kowdley, director of the NGFR – Harris County OpEx. “We hope that the outcomes from the OpEx will provide insight and help us develop recommendations for first responder technology integration for public-safety agencies in both urban and rural communities across the nation.”

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On 12/3/18, Leonard Cayetano said:
This is interesting. Can we at Zetron get access to the some of the presentations after the event?

Editor's Note: We are not sure if there will be presentations following the event but we will try to get more information.

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