Academics and industry experts with pioneering ideas capable of producing the next generation of aviation and border security can apply for funding through the Future Screening for Aviation and Borders competition which launched on Sunday (5 May).
A funding pot worth £4.5m is available over the next two years for innovative solutions that can enhance the screening of people and goods and strengthen the detection of dangerous, illicit and contraband items.
The competition has been developed by the Future Aviation Security Solutions (FASS) programme - a joint initiative between the Home Office and Department for Transport (DfT) - and the Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) to encourage novel solutions that cover all aspects of aviation and border screening - from passengers to cargo, mail, hold bags and more.
With the global shift towards a more integrated transport system, greater autonomy and automation, the competition is also looking for innovations capable of bringing current and future security solutions together. This could mean a more streamlined and non-intrusive screening experience for passengers and staff with security processes working together to screen individuals as they travel through an airport.
Aviation Minister Baroness Vere said: “The UK has some of the most advanced aviation security in the world, and we must continue to make it safer and easier for everyone using airports.
“We want ambitious and innovative businesses to apply for funding to develop the security technologies of the future.”
Screening passengers is an essential part of aviation security but threats to the industry are multifaceted and ever-evolving. By splitting the competition into five challenges the FASS programme is inviting innovators to think about different aspects of security.
This includes challenging academia and industry to develop solutions that can enhance the screening of cargo, mail or hold bags for prohibited and contraband items and make it even tougher for these to be taken on board an aircraft.
The UK has one of the safest aviation systems in the world and has made one of the largest contributions to driving up global aviation security standards. This competition builds on the Government’s commitment in the Aviation Strategy to continually reinforce aviation security standards to ensure the skies remain safer for everyone.
Security Minister, Ben Wallace, said: “The FASS is once again fulfilling its vital role of bringing government, industry and experts together to ensure that the UK continues to be amongst the best in the world at developing of technologies which keep us ahead of the threats that we all sadly face.
“This competition will help to protect passengers by helping to keep dangerous and illegal items off our planes, whilst having the added benefit of improving their travel experience.”
“By also tackling border security, we are ensuring that innovators have the greatest impact in protecting the British public from harm.”
DASA finds and funds exploitable innovation to support UK defence and security and will continue its longstanding and successful partnership with the FASS programme for this latest competition.
Interested parties are encouraged to submit a proposal through DASA’s website. The competition closes on Monday 1 July 2019 at midday.
BlueSky Business Aviation News | 9th May 2019 | Issue #510