Combatting Terrorism Officials Want to See Through Walls and Floors


Sgt. Matt Pike, 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) force reconnaissance radio operator and native of Plano, Texas, provides security for his team during a close quarters tactics course. (Marine photo)The U.S. military and border patrol want a scanning device that can see through walls and floors to uncover hidden tunnels and weapon caches, among other threats. It is one of many requests made by the Combatting Terrorism Technical Support Office on behalf of multiple government partners.

CTTSO officials unveiled in December a list of requirements for a host of futuristic gadgets, software, armor and equipment as part of its Draft Broad Area Announcement. The list ranged from material science breakthroughs to offer troops light weight armor to advanced 3D X-Ray Imaging Systems.

Company leaders met CTTSO officials at the Reagan Building in Washington D.C. on Jan. 20 to ask questions and get a better understanding of the requirements before submitting their Phase 1 Quad Charts by March 18, 2016.

Tunnel detection technology, wearables and cyber security were the three themes that stood out from CTTSO’s BAA for fiscal year 2017. CTTSO Chief of Staff Adam Tarsi said the federal government wants to make significant investments in tunnel technology.

Along with a scanning device to see through walls and floors, CTTSO is seeking a compact wireless in-tunnel reconnaissance system (CWITRS). This robot system would need to navigate unpredictable tunnel terrain while enduring a range of weather and have the battery life to operate as long as eight hours.

Wearables are another tech sector gaining momentum in national security agencies. The Defense Department and Department of Homeland Security have made recent investments to attract developers to provide new wearables innovations to these agencies.

CTTSO wants wireless health monitors for troops to allow commanders to know their status in combat. The wearable monitor would allow commanders to monitor their teams during periods of radio silence.

It’s not just troops’ heart beats the military wants to track. CTTSO is also seeking a wearable chemical sensing platform. Officials are looking for companies to develop a low-cost wearable that will quickly alert troops to low level chemical or explosive hazards to give individuals the chance to escape dangerous scenarios.

And much like the rest of the government, CTTSO wants to find cyber solutions to include a forensically validated software tool to collect and store digital data in cloud-based containers. Officials also want a manpackable micro cloud server that extend the digital capabilities to soldiers and Marines operating at the “tactical edge.”

Check out the rest of the requirements in the BAA here.

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