Homeland Security asks industry for ideas to defend against synthetic biological terrorism

WASHINGTON, 25 Feb. 2016. U.S. government homeland security experts are reaching out to industry for ideas and enabling technologies for safeguarding civilians from attacks involving biological terrorism attacks on mass-transit systems and other areas where people gather.

Homeland Security asks industry for ideas to defend against synthetic biological terrorism
Homeland Security asks industry for ideas to defend against synthetic biological terrorism
WASHINGTON, 25 Feb. 2016. U.S. government homeland security experts are reaching out to industry for ideas and enabling technologies for safeguarding civilians from attacks involving biological terrorism attacks on mass-transit systems and other areas where people gather.

Officials of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a solicitation Wednesday (HSHQDC14RB0009OBAACALL11) for the Architecture for Defense against Malignant Synthetic Biothreat Agents project.

Experts from the DHS Science and Technology branch are asking companies to help identify gaps in technology for chemical and biological countermeasures in transit systems, as well as to design surveillance technologies able to detect and characterize a biological attack.

The project involves terrorism risk analysis, intentional attack analysis, and scenario modeling and simulation to understand the impact of a biological attack, including experiments to characterize agents and their properties.

Recent developments in synthetic biology have changed the biodefense landscape drastically because it has accelerated the terrorist capability to develop biological organisms and threat agents that could harm American citizens and industries, DHS experts warn.

Related: Pentagon eyes hand-held detector to protect warfighters from biological warfare attacks

To counter this, DHS experts want to develop an architecture to help anticipate and defend against synthetic malignant biothreat agents. DHS also wants to address gaps in the nation’s ability to detect, protect against, respond to, and recover from attacks with these agents.

The winning company will generate an unclassified report detailing the results of the investigation. Only one contract worth about $200,000 will be awarded.

Companies interested should submit proposals no later than 18 March 2016 online at https://baa2.st.dhs.gov/portal/BAA/. Email questions or concerns to Michael Jones at DHS at Michael.Jones@hq.dhs.gov no later than 4 March 2016.

More information is online at https://www.fbo.gov/spg/DHS/OCPO/DHS-OCPO/HSHQDC14RB0009OBAACALL11/listing.html.

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