The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) issued a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) seeking information on developing software capable of whole-body (WB) identification at long-range and from elevated platforms.

The Biometric Recognition and Identification at Altitude and Range (BRIAR) Program seeks to help the Intelligence Community (IC) and Defense Department (DoD) “identify or recognize individuals under challenging scenarios” like range, elevation, atmospheric turbulence, or elevated and/or aerial sensor platforms.

“Expanding the range of conditions in which accurate and reliable biometric-based identification could be performed would greatly improve the number of addressable missions, types of platforms and sensors from which biometrics can be reliably used, and quality of outcomes and decisions,” the BAA says.

IARPA says that facial recognition has become the best biometric modality for IC and DoD mission with unconstrained conditions, but limited research has been performed on facial recognition with images used from high camera pitch angles, like security cameras on buildings or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. Additionally, imagery at long-range or high altitude may need additional biometric signatures along with facial recognition to get an accurate identification, such as WB identification, gait recognition, and/or anthropometric classification.

“The BRIAR Program will address these technical needs and challenges by pursuing cutting-edge research into multi-modal biometric recognition algorithms to develop innovations in WB biometrics that fuse [facial recognition] with other biometric signatures,” the BAA said. “The research will be supported throughout the program with robust, demographically diverse, domain-relevant biometric data that directly capture the full range of challenging conditions represented in long-range and elevated platform imagery.”

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.