On November 20, the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity posted a request for information about Detection and Characterization of Special Nuclear Material (IARPA-RFI-18-01). Responses are due by December 18.
The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) is seeking information on research efforts in the area of detection of special nuclear material (SNM). This request for information (RFI) is issued solely for information gathering and planning purposes; this RFI does not constitute a formal solicitation for proposals. The following sections of this announcement contain details of the scope of technical efforts of interest, along with instructions for the submission of responses.
Background & Scope
Radiation emission serves as a signature for the possible presence of SNM. At present, land-based detection of SNM, and other radioactive sources in commerce, is primarily performed by radiation portal monitors (RPMs). These RPMs are positioned at chokepoints such as border crossings, entrances to facilities, or other areas of interest. For roadside applications, RPMs are generally positioned close to traffic lanes so that individual vehicles can be measured while moving at slow speeds in order to maximize detection sensitivity. In some circumstances, there is the need to perform radiation measurements of vehicles along open roadways without impeding the flow of traffic. In these cases, it is necessary to position detectors farther from traffic lanes and to have sufficient sensitivity to measure vehicles moving at highway speeds.
IARPA is interested in novel, innovative, state-of-the-art (SOTA) capabilities in compact, highly sensitive detectors of SNM for a range of applications. Responses to this RFI can describe both existing detectors and concepts for future detectors. Existing applications or areas of interest to IARPA include, but are not limited to:
Radiation detection along open roads with vehicles moving at highway speeds
Cargo inspection at ports of entry
Detection of SNM radiation sources in urban environments
Full information is available here.