TSA wants better X-ray gear for air cargo inspections

As it continues to look for ways to tighten security for air cargo, TSA has launched a market research effort to find companies that produce X-ray equipment that can detect potential threats inside cargo pieces, parcels and pallets.

"The system will be used to differentiate metallic, non-metallic, and organic substances, and to aid in discriminating threat items," says a sources sought notice posted by TSA on March 21.

TSA is hoping to find X-ray gear which can be integrated into a warehouse environment and can go beyond the current capability of X-ray equipment to provide a "two-dimensional top-down view."

The ideal equipment will be able to locate and identify both metallic threats and explosive compounds. In addition, TSA is searching for equipment with "a training subsystem that can test users on their ability to discern threats from non-threats by superimposing threat images onto screened items," the notice explained.

The agency is looking primarily for "mature" commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) X-ray technology with a proven history of screening cargo and which can be readily available.

Interested vendors are invited to submit written responses of not more than 20 pages to Venita Mathias, contract specialist, at 571-0227-1201 by March 31.


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