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Brussels, 13th October 2006

PASR 2006: 15 new security research projects to combat terrorism

The Preparatory Action on 'Enhancement of the European industrial potential in the field of Security Research 2004-2006' (PASR) focuses in particular on the development of a European security research agenda to bridge the gap between civil research, as supported by EC Framework Programmes, and national and intergovernmental security research initiatives. Given the increasing importance of security concerns and, in light of the successful implementation of the PASR, Security Research will be integral part of the 7th RTD Framework Programme (2007-2013) –FP7, with a total budget of about € 1.35 billion.

From 12 till 16 June 2005, a large panel of independent experts evaluated the 3rd call for proposals of the PASR action. With 165 proposals submitted the response to this call was again overwhelming. With an available budget of €15 Million, fifteen proposals - 8 technology projects and 7 supporting activities - were selected.

Main topics addressed by the 8 selected projects are: detection of explosives and biological agents, management tools for humanitarian and rescue operations, protection of drinking water network against chemical or biological terrorist attack, tracking system for identification of financial transactions linked to crime or terrorist activities, wireless communication network for emergency and security end-users.

The selected supporting activities are complementary, covering some specific fields related to coordination security network, involvement of SMEs, human behaviour and standardisation.

Only two years after the latest enlargement, it is encouraging recording the participation of entities from all 25 EU Member States.
More information on the Commission’s security research activities on:

The projects selected are:

1. Improving technologies to detect of explosives

The recent events in London Heathrow show the vulnerabilities of the air transport system to the risk of different types of explosives. ISOTREX (Integrated System for On-line Trace Explosives detection in solid and vapour state) aims to develop a combined instrument for particle/vapour detection and its subsequent integration into a portable system for use at large check points (e.g. airports, customs, main post-offices) to detect a wide range of explosives including liquids.

Project leader: ENEA, Italy.

The consortium is composed of 6 participants from 3 countries.

2. Better integrating and co-ordinating different emergency services for humanitarian operations

CITRINE (Common Intelligence and Traceability for Rescues and IdentificatioN opErations) aims to develop a first version of an integrated set of shared information management tools and models to facilitate the efficient integration of diverse emergency and management services for humanitarian operations and rescue tasks in support of the external policies of the EU with an emphasis on security aspects. CITRINE will support the crisis management process in mitigation, damage assessment and preliminary recovery phase, focusing on humanitarian activities provided by NGOs and Health Services

Project leader: Thales Security Systems, France

The consortium is composed of 9 participants from 5 countries

3. Protecting the drinking water supply

The objective of WATERSAFE (On-Line Monitoring of Drinking Water for Public Security from Deliberate or Accidental Contamination) aims to develop sensing and decontamination technologies for optimising security and protection of networked drinking water distribution systems against terrorist and criminal actions. It will harness breakthrough nanotechnologies in sensing and detoxification. The aim is to give maximum protection by developing on-line systems that can be widely deployed for “early warning” and detoxification, which are not available today. New sensing and detoxification methods with tenfold improvement in efficiency will be integrated into combined systems that are intelligent, sensitive, flexible, compact and inexpensive, making them suitable for installation at vulnerable points in water systems. The project joins 4 SMEs with research groups and a major water company (which will participate to the validation of the prototype).

Project leader: C-Tech Innovation, UK

The consortium is composed of 8 participants from 5 countries

4. Enhancing the detection and protection against biological harmful substances

Biological weapons have been a threat for many years but recent advances in biotechnology make the problem potentially more serious. Hence the escalating dangers must be controlled and detection and alarm systems developed. Biological detection technologies are in a much less mature stage of development than chemical detectors so the BODE (Biological Optical Detection Experiment) project addresses the necessity of developing a reliable, accurate, stand off detection tool for biological particles. This research project aims to identifying the functional and operational requirements of a detection apparatus and to propose a specification for a biological detection demonstrator device, to design, manufacture and integrate demonstrator elements. The consortium is composed of industrialists, research centres, and end users from six different countries.

Project leader: CILAS, France

The consortium is composed of 10 participants from 6 countries

5. Enhancing surveillance and tracking while protecting civil liberties and privacy

The i-TRACS (Counter-Terrorism identification and tracking system using the analysis of communications, financial and travel data) project aims to develop an innovative advanced tracking and surveillance system consolidating and integrating multiple information data sources to arrive at a socially acceptable solution in terms of civil liberties and the privacy. I-TRACS will provide technology, regulatory and market watches, to develop acceptable socially intelligent S&T innovations towards workable solutions. The i- TRACS consortium has the confluence of expertise to empower the required and justifiable data intelligence gathering of evidence in order to track and hopefully halt prima facie suspected criminal activities. One of the partners is a civil liberties group.

Project leader: CICOM Organisation, France

The consortium is composed of 10 participants from 5 countries

6. Elaborating a Software Defined Radio Architectural Framework

WINTSEC (Wireless INTeroperability for SECurity) project aims to explore a mix of complementary solutions to overcome the barriers for wireless interoperability across different security agencies, taking into account the constraints of the security services and legacy systems and equipment. WINTSEC studies the deployment of standardized Internetworking layer at Core Network level and Software Defined Radio (SDR) added value for Base Station and Terminal. WINTSEC addresses information assurance, elaborates the European “SDR Architectural Framework” and the concepts for the “SDR Certification Environment”. It further explores the impacts of flexible spectrum management for security applications, and illustrates the interoperability concepts elaborated through tangible proof-of-concept demonstrations. Formed by 23 organizations from 12 nations, WINTSEC federates current efforts done in these areas and promotes solutions acceptable by the European actors, paving the way for further standardization and refinement.

Project leader: Thales Communications, France

The consortium is composed of 11 participants from 7 countries

7. Combating money laundering and terrorism financing

GATE (Next Generation of Anti-Terrorist Financing Methods) will study new adaptive multidisciplinary modelling techniques to detect criminal behaviour by flagging suspicious human behaviours for anti-money laundering/anti terrorism financing. It will combine intelligence from within individual financial institutions with computational trust modelling and mining intelligence. The project will identify, design, deploy and validate models in real conditions within banks to capture more complex behaviours including multidisciplinary aspects beyond utilising transaction data from financial institutions, such as demographics, social networks, lifestyle or cultural behaviours.

Project leader: EXODUS, Greece

The consortium is composed of 6 participants from 4 countries

8. Designing models to predict the dispersion of microbes

The AEROBACTICS project (Assessment of the quantity, identity, viability, origin and dispersion of airborne micro-organisms for application in crisis management tools) aims to develop models to firstly better distinguish between the natural background of micro-organisms and environmental pathogenic traits, and the real biological attacks and subsequently to predict the aerial dispersion from an unwanted release. Sensor systems for bio terror detection require quantitative input about the natural background of micro-organisms and environmental pathogenic traits, in order to distinguish natural occurrences from real attacks. However, knowledge of numbers, species, viability and pathogenicity of airborne micro-organisms is extremely scarce, and models to predict background fluctuations are inadequate. AEROBACTICS is designed to close these gaps of knowledge. Two models will be developed, one for background levels and long-range dispersion, and one for the aerial dispersion from an unwanted release. Both natural events and intentional releases of micro-organisms will be utilised experimentally.

Project leader: National Environmental Research Institute, Denmark

The consortium is composed of 4 participants from 3 countries

9. Enhancing European Border security

The enhancement of the European border security level will require a better interoperability of the technologies deployed at borders. The STABORSEC (Standards for Border Security enhancement) supporting activity will identify the technical standards that will support such improvement. STABORSEC will identify the standards, including the conformity and the evaluation mechanisms, and produce a detailed prioritised inventory of the standardisation efforts. This output will be public, will guide the upcoming European standardisation activities, and will contribute to the enhancement of border security levels.

Project leader: SAGEM Défense Sécurité, France

The consortium is composed of 8 participants from 6 countries

10. Increasing the participation of SMEs in security research activities

The main goal of the project SECURESME (Supporting Security Field SMEs in preparing RTD projects) is to be an added value to the integration of SMEs operating in the area of Security and by doing this, increase the participation of SMEs in European Research activities. The proposed action will be carried out along the following main axes of activities:

  • Awareness building and workshops
  • Research and innovation strategy assessment
  • Building R&D competences
  • Preparation for future activities

Project leader: INOVAMAIS, Portugal

The consortium is composed of 6 participants from 4 countries

11. Increasing the preparedness and resilience in case of a bioterrorist event

The goal of BIO3R (Bioterrorism Resilience, Research, Reaction) is to assess the operational responses needed to improve the preparedness and resilience of the EU society and citizen in the case of a bioterrorist event. BIO3R will study scenarios to reinforce the EU capabilities in:

  • Research by exploring technology and health strategies, networking early-warning and defence systems, and bio-hazard spread modelling;
  • Societal Reaction through the reinforcement of crisis-management policies, networking and associated European public and law strategies, interconnecting European national and local levels;
  • Resilience by mitigating bio-attacks with emergency counter-measures, training of practitioners and by providing comprehensive information for EU citizens through a specially developed web portal and a dedicated handbook model.

Project leader: Institut pour la Recherche Stratégique, France

The consortium is composed of 20 participants from 8 countries

12. Improving the efficiency of the pedestrian police officer

Pedestrian police officers play a major role in policing and security. Key to their mission is the ability to gather intelligence, record crime and incidents, retrieve information from police systems and input information into them, identify people encountered, be accessible to their communities. They need to spend as much time as possible engaged in active policing on the street visible to citizens and respectful of privacy. Currently, their efficiency suffers from poor information capture and management, lack of connection with vehicles and central office; they spend too much time in office work. The objective of the one-year Supporting Activity "EuroCop" (the pedestrian Police Officer) is to define and evaluate technologies, based on new ICT solutions, to improve the efficiency of pedestrian police officers.

Project leader: SAGEM Défense Sécurité, France

The consortium is composed of 7 participants from 4 countries

13. Integrating the overall security market and supply chain

STACCATO (STAkeholders platform for supply Chain mapping, market Conditions Analysis and Technologies Opportunities) defines methods and solutions integrating the overall security market and supply chain and addressing market access issues and operational needs in addition to research issues and gap analysis undertaken through PASR1 and PASR2. STACCATO examines ways to effectively coordinate European Security Technological Industrial Base (STIB) and map its competences in EU-27. It fosters SMEs in the security landscape to integrate their potential for innovation. It proposes technological watch methodology, analyses conditions and suggests recommendations to develop a common European Security Equipment Market (ESEM), taking into account regulatory issues and coordinating national, international, regional and EU security-related research programs.

Project leader: Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe

The consortium is composed of 11 participants from 6 countries

14. Setting up a European network for testing and certification of biometric components

The BioTesting Europe project aims to prepare the setting up of a European network for testing and certification of biometric components and systems. Given the lack of European coordination and with 25 EU member states now implementing the new electronic passports including biometric identifiers enormous risks are being created in terms of efficiency, security and convenience of the overall systems. Still there are no adequate testing criteria, nor compliancy tests to verify conformity of the biometric components. In order to establish European interoperability, the project will focus on:

  • Outlining the need for testing and certification on the end user level and defining the ‘business case’
  • Making an up-to-date inventory of:
  1. What needs to be tested based on end user requirements
  2. Most relevant existing testing schemes
  3. Existing competencies at European independent testing laboratories in the area of biometric performance, interoperability, and security testing
  4. Existing work on standardisation and testing
  • Based on the outcome of the inventory:
  1. Mapping of the user requirements on the existing competencies
  2. Performing a gap analysis to determine what existing competencies can be used and what needs to be developed

The final outcome of the project will be: A European Biometric Testing and Certification Roadmap, including research targets.

Project leader: European Biometrics Forum

The consortium is composed of 3 participants from 3 countries

15. Tracking potentially suspicious persons

The main goal of HAMLeT (Hazardous Material Localisation & Person Tracking) is the classification and tracking of potentially suspicious persons for focusing the attention of security personnel for in-door applications. Basic input data for the classification are provided by chemical sensors for detecting hazardous materials, such as explosives. Due to their fundamental lack in spatio-temporal resolution, however, an individual chemical sensor is unable to localize hazardous material and to associate it to an individual person. Within the integrative approach of HAMLeT, this deficiency is compensated in dynamic multiple person scenarios by fusing the output of several chemical sensors with kinematical data from laser range-scanning or video sensors to be used for multiple person tracking.

Among the expected results are recommendations for characterizing and standardizing the detection performance of chemical sensors with respect to explosives test bodies. At present such standards are non-existent. HAMLeT thus demonstrates new capabilities for early detection, localization, and continuous tracking of individuals or groups carrying hazardous material within a multiple person flow.

Project leader: FGAN, Germany

The consortium is composed of 5 participants from 2 countries

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