TSA Expands Access Control Pilot Program to 2 More Airports


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is adding two more airports to its Access Control Pilot Program. The program, which is evaluating Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and other technologies to limit access into nonpassenger areas to authorized personnel only, is including San Jose, Calif.’s San Jose Int’l Airport and Helena, Mont.’s Helena Regional Airport.

The move brings the number of airports in the test program to 10. The TSA announced the first phase of the program in May for eight airports. The first phase is expected to be completed by the end of 2004. A second phase involving 10 different airports will continue to evaluate select technologies with the aid of information learned in the first round of tests.

Unisys Corp., located in Blue Bell, Pa., was made prime contractor of the program by TSA in October 2003. The program tests RFID, biometric, advanced video surveillance and anti-piggybacking technologies in several combinations.

The San Jose site will host tests of several technologies, including Global Positioning System receivers and biometric technology used to identify and track vehicles inside a secure area. Helena’s airport will test a vehicle tracking system using voice recognition, an optical character reader and video motion analysis technology to track the path of the vehicle inside authorized areas.

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