The Virginia Institute for Space Flight & Autonomy (VISA) and the Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation (VIPC) have selected ANRA Technologies and Alliance Solutions Group for their innovative proposals for the Announcement of Opportunity (AO) for Port Security and Emergency Response Unmanned Systems (UxS) Demonstration Projects.
The AO requested UxS-enabled solutions to address the needs identified at the Public Safety and Emergency Response Workshop and Summit held in Norfolk, Virginia in the summer of 2021. Participants included emergency response officials, UxS users, operators, and the Port of Virginia. The group’s members identified opportunities for UxS technologies to improve and enhance safety, security, and operational effectiveness. They also defined the requirements for innovation testing, adoption, and success.
After an outstanding response from UxS technologists, two Virginia companies were selected for their compelling technology solutions and strategies and will receive initial VIPC funding of more than $100,000. The companies selected are ANRA Technologies for the development of a complete solution single software platform that connects all UxS for public safety and emergency response missions and Alliance Solutions Group for a comprehensive proposal to demonstrate the ArgusElite Hazmat UAS solution and decision-ready implementation plan.
“The submissions we received certainly highlighted the innovation and capacity of Virginia companies to lead UxS industry solutions for Port Security and Emergency Response,” said Tracy Tynan, Director of the Virginia Unmanned Systems Center at VIPC. “These AO projects are the next step in providing opportunities to demonstrate system applications of UxS platforms, sensors, and data/information management that could solve the challenging problems the public safety and emergency response communities face daily.”
“The companies selected for this project have offered UxS technology and applications that will heighten security and protection at the Port of Virginia, which is a leading gateway for global trade on the East Coast, and the surrounding area in Hampton Roads,” said David Bowles, Executive Director of VISA. “These UxS systems will support first responders with mission-critical solutions for reacting more quickly and effectively to life-threatening situations that are often already difficult due to the region’s challenging coastal terrain and severe weather.”
All submitted proposals were evaluated by a team of representatives from the Port of Virginia, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM), the local public safety community, and VIPC.
Due to the outstanding response across industry and academia, there is a possibility that additional project funding will become available, and more project proposals will be considered.