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DHS Issues RFI for TSA Open Architecture Initiatives

The Department of Homeland Security has published an RFI (Notice ID TSA25-04-03789) to collect feedback related to Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Open Architecture (OA) initiatives. The TSA issued this RFI to conduct market research to better understand vendor capabilities, qualifications, approaches, costs, risks, and technical challenges with regard to TSA’s vision of a connected transportation security system of systems based on open architecture principles and solutions. Written responses to this RFI are due no later than Friday, March 3, 2023 at 3:00pm.

Open Architecture is a design approach where components, such as software and hardware, are standards-based and interoperable to allow a wide range of industry partners to create improved subcomponents (e.g., new detection algorithms, user interfaces, reporting systems, etc.).  Leveraging an open architecture design approach will enable TSA to improve its security posture, support its frontline workforce, and promote an improved traveler experience. The successful implementation of this approach will require coordination across a wide range of partners to include government agencies, regulators, industry and international partners, national labs, academia, and airports.

According to the RFI, TSA has defined multiple, concurrent initiatives that implement open architecture principles to establish a connected transportation security system of systems. This RFI is focused on the following:

  • Common data formats and interfaces to facilitate interoperability, including Digital Imaging and Communications in Security (DICOS) and Open Platform Software Library (OPSL).
  • Data accessibility to establish a comprehensive dataset that can be used to capitalize on industry advancements in artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other solution development.
  • Common Workstation to standardize the physical and graphical user interface across screening solutions to reduce training, certification, and complexity for the officers.
  • Threat Recognition System (TRS) construct to combine computing hardware, OPSL, and DICOS into a platform supporting interoperable screening equipment (on-person, accessible property, etc.) while decoupling the algorithm and Common Workstation through vendor-neutral APIs and communication protocols.

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