Army looks to BDS for technologies to detect explosives hidden on potential suicide bombers

NATICK, Mass., 1 Aug. 2014. U.S. Army explosives-detection experts needed multi-sensor systems to detect improvised weapons hidden on human suicide bombers at safe distances before these suicide bombers can do widespread damage. They found their solution from Broadband Discovery Systems (BDS) Inc. in Scotts Valley, Calif.

Officials of the Army Contracting Command at Natick, Mass., announced a $9 million contract to BDS on Wednesday to build, test, and assess multi-sensor stand-off person-borne improvised explosive device (IED) detection systems.

BDS specializes in three areas of advanced sensor technologies for IED detection: Strategic Intelligence Forward-looking Technology (SIFT); the RONIN sensor system; and RONIN biometrics.

SIFT offers capabilities for enhancing the covert detection and processing capabilities of a variety of threats such as weapons; cell phones and electronics; and IEDs, company officials say.

Related: Army to buy six IED-hunting ground-penetrating radars from NIITEK for pre-procurement testing

The SIFT processing algorithms and sensor hardware collects data in real-time, and uses small, unobtrusive, and hidden devices that plug into existing security systems for a broad range of security applications.

The RONIN sensor system combines sensor inputs and runs the incoming data through algorithms to detect threats or events of interest and pinpoint the threat’s location, whether on one person, or among several people, BDS officials say. RONIN also provides detailed information about the detected event of interest.

RONIN sensor systems are portable or permanently installed, and can work at long distances. These sensors are designed to protect, perimeters, flight lines, seaports, and checkpoints from land or sea.

Related: ERCo Laser Induced Acoustics to help DTRA detect IED threats from standoff ranges

RONIN offers overt operation to cover key avenues of approach to ensure that intruders must to go through several layers of sensors before reaching targeted personnel and resources, BDS officials say. RONIN uses non-traditional physical security capabilities like biometrics to provide probabilistic and deterministic matching on a one-to-many level for access control and law enforcement forensics.

RONIN biometrics, meanwhile, is an intelligent software framework that automatically determines inference and assessment information based on input provided by a network of biometric data, BDS officials say. It provides a one-to-many anomaly detection to provide strong, weak, and close matches.

On this contract BDS will do the work in locations determined by each order, and should be finished by July 2019. For more information contact BDS online at, or the Army Contracting Command Natick at

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August 2015
Volume 26, Issue 8

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