DASA Launches Future Screening for Aviation and Borders Competition

The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) is part of the UK Government’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), run by the Ministry of Defence. The Accelerator funds proof-of-concept research that offers a high potential benefit to defence and security in the UK and which thereby supports UK economic growth and prosperity.

DASA has launched a competition as part of the Future Aviation Security Solutions (FASS) programme, which seeks to help Government, Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and the aviation industry continue to improve aviation security. The competition itself is seeking innovations that can provide step changes to the current capabilities of screening and detection of dangerous, illicit and/or contraband items while minimising the burden on passengers and aviation staff. DASA is not looking for minor advancements in current technology, but is seeking more revolutionary concepts that have the potential to be the next generation of aviation security solutions.

The competition is made up of five challenges, addressing different aspects of aviation security and beyond, to explore technologies that can also be used to detect threats at non-aviation related borders. It is likely that some solutions may be applicable to more than one challenge, but this is not a necessity. Proposals should make clear which challenge(s) their solution addresses. The challenge areas are as follows:

Improving the screening process for passengers, staff and their belongings.

Improving the screening process for in-flight supplies.

Rapid screening of cargo, mail or hold bags for prohibited and contraband items.

Improving aviation security screening using a systems approach/systems integration.

Going beyond aviation security – improving detection and identification of contraband and illicit items at the border.

Contracts will be funded for an initial period of up to six months, although proposals of less than six months are also welcomed, such as for scoping and feasibility studies. DASA is looking to undertake continuous development of solutions, and the intent is to provide further funding to projects that are demonstrated to be successful during this initial period. Therefore, unlike previous DASA-FASS competitions, this is the only planned phase for this call. Further development of solutions beyond the initial period of up to six months will take place through a framework agreement and tasking.

Submissions are welcome from all organisation types and individuals, with no nationality restrictions. Up to £4.5million is expected to be available to fund a wide range of multiple projects, which are anticipated to run up until 28 February 2021.

Suppliers are requested to submit an outline of their proposal by 10 June 2019 before submitting a full proposal. The outline proposal is not a mandatory step but is highly recommended to ensure that resources are focused on the most relevant proposals.

Full proposals must be submitted by 1 July 2019 (midday). Both outline and full proposals must be submitted via the DASA submission service.

More information about this research funding opportunity and the application process is available on the RESEARCHconnect funding information platform. RESEARCHconnect provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on research funding news and policy. To find out more about how RESEARCHconnect can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.