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Defense Industry Daily July 27, 2009

SPAWAR Awards SAIC a $7M Contract to Develop Container Security Devices

Science Applications International Corp (SAIC) in San Diego, CA received a $7 million indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N66001-09-D-0034) from the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) Pacific to develop a container security device (CSD), a small, low-power sensor mounted on or within a shipping container to detect and warn of the opening or removal of container doors. The contract includes a 3-year ordering period without options.

SAIC will perform work in San Diego and expects to complete it by July 23/12. This contract was not competitively procured; this is a sole source, follow-on contract under the authority of U.S. federal law: only one responsible source and no other supplies or services will satisfy agency requirements. Development of the CSD was initiated by SAIC under contract N66001-05-D-6013, which was competitively awarded.

DID has more on container security devices…

According to Globalsecurity.org, a container security device, which includes a heavy-duty seal and an electronic sensor, registers every legitimate, as well as unauthorized, opening of a shipping container. The CSD can be snapped into place in the door jamb of an existing container without any special tools. After loading, the shipper accesses the system, logs in an access code, registers the container number and authorizes sealing the container. The system generates an entry that gives the time, date, and seal number.

The CSD can be queried by anyone with access to the system. It transmits information to a receiver, which can be attached to any cell phone with global capability. In response, the device will generate a data log that records every time the device has been electronically queried and each time the door has been opened and resealed. A checking device, which does not require a cell phone, can also be used to check the seal’s status. The checking device indicates only whether the container has been opened.

Readers are also placed at port cargo gateways to monitor the security devices. At its destination or any intermediate point, an authorized person can key in an access number and open the container. If a container has been tampered with, it will be referred for inspection. While there will still be spot checks of shipments that raise no red flags, the device serves as a sorter, placing containers into stop-and-go lanes and freeing inspectors to focus on containers that may pose a higher risk.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has called for development of a CSD that monitors more than the status of the container doors. The agency wants devices that can detect unauthorized intrusions anywhere on the container, not just through the doors, according to a report by Security Info Watch.


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