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Transportation Security Administration

Electronic Baggage Screening Program

The Electronic Baggage Screening Program was established by congressional mandate for screening of all passenger checked baggage for concealed explosives. The program achieves this mission by managing the full life cycle of acquisition activities including requirements identification, testing, procurement, deployment and sustainment of screening equipment.

Planning Guidelines and Design Standards

TSA assists planners and designers in developing cost-effective solutions for checked baggage inspection systems. The design principles and methods incorporate insights and experiences of industry stakeholders, including airport and airline representatives, planners, architects, baggage handling system designers and equipment manufacturers.

Funding Policy

Congress authorizes TSA to make grants to airports to help strengthen the nation’s critical infrastructure against risks associated with potential terrorist attacks. TSA utilizes letters of intent and other transaction agreements as funding instruments to reimburse airport sponsors for eligible aviation security projects. TSA distributes funds to airports to assist in infrastructure improvements to enhance the ability of airports to:

  • Install baggage conveyer systems related to aviation security.
  • Reconfigure terminal baggage areas as required to install explosive detection systems.
  • Deploy explosive detection systems behind the ticket counter, in the baggage sorting area or in line with the baggage handling system.

Read the Planning Guidelines and Design Standards.

Electronic Baggage Screening Program Design OTA Application
Electronic Baggage Screening Program Facility Modification OTA Application

EBSP FAQ

Can additional funds be requested for currently or previously funded projects?

Projects previously funded for facility modification by the Electronic Baggage Screening Program through either another transaction agreement or memorandum of agreement are not eligible for additional funds.

Should projects previously funded by TSA require additional funds, the project sponsor should submit a request including a detailed cost estimate. TSA will not reimburse for anything outside of the existing scope or for cost incurred before it is executed. The project sponsor must contact the appropriate point of contact.

Can funds be requested to cover costs already incurred?

TSA will not provide funding for a checked baggage inspection system project that does not have an authorized funding agreement in place.

Can more than one project be submitted?

Airports may submit applications for more than one project; however, a separate application for each individually designed and constructed project is required for the following reasons:

  • To ensure a unique request identification number is included in each application in order to track the status of the project.
  • To avoid confusion regarding additional information requirements for a specific project.
  • To resolve design review comments for specific projects.
  • To allow for resolution of issues regarding one project without jeopardizing any other projects.

What costs will be considered for funding?

The TSA Funding of Checked Baggage Inspection System Project Costs Policy Memo contains additional information regarding allowable and allocable costs, up to the not-to-exceed value of each project, covered by design and facility modification applications.  

Costs identified as allowable and allocable will be part of the project funding negotiations between TSA and the airport depending on the option selected from those included in the submitted alternatives analysis. The airport’s ability to fund future increases in annual operations and maintenance costs related to the operation of an in-line system is essential to the overall analysis of project viability. TSA recommends airports perform a thorough analysis of the costs associated with the implementation of an in-line system to identify potential increases in operational cost.

What happens if the application package is incomplete?

If the application package is deemed incomplete, the airport executive point of contact will be contacted via email and the missing information will be requested. The airport will then have the opportunity to submit the missing information in order for it to be included with the application.

What is the application process?

Interested project sponsors must submit a completed application to the federal security director or designated representative. The current version of the design application or facility modification application must be used.

Prior to submission, the security director will submit a request via the equipment request interface, receiving a request identification number from the requirements management advisory group – this number must be included on the application. For submission, please email your application.

TSA reviews the application and contacts the airport executive point of contact if any information is missing. After review, a technical interchange meeting is held. If determined an in-line system is not suitable for a given screening zone, the airport will be notified the application will not be considered for funding.

What is the funding application review process?

Applications will be reviewed only after all requested documents and plans have been received. Applications failing to include all the required documentation are incomplete and may not be considered in the current funding cycle. Upon receipt, a funding application is:

  • Reviewed for compliance against submission information requirements.
  • If incomplete or non-conforming, email identifying the missing information is sent to the airport executive point of contact.
  • If project is outside the scope of the Electronic Baggage Screening Program, email communication is sent to the airport executive point of contact.
  • Some projects require design review for compliance. As part of the process, TSA coordinates between airport and airport’s baggage handling system designer to review and resolve any comments or outstanding issues.
  • Upon completion of the review process, TSA sends notification of current status to the airport.

What is the process for submitting an application?

Electronic submissions are preferred, please email your submission.  If the airport encounters transmission problems due to file size limitations, please send two copies of the documents, with scalable drawings, on a CD via express mailing service to the following address:

EBSP RPC Point of Contact
Mail Stop TSA TSIF - #32
Transportation Security Administration
3701 West Post Office Road
Washington, D.C. 20528-6032

Documents should be provided in the file formats specified.

What supporting documentation is required?

The Planning Guidelines and Design Standards outline the supporting documentation requirements for in-line and mini in-line system. The required deliverables for mini in-line and in-line systems can be found in the figure entitled “Deliverables Checklist for In-line CBIS.” The “Contents” section includes all figure titles in the document for easy reference. It is imperative that the airport complies with submission of all required and applicable documents in the checklist to prevent unnecessary delays during the design review process. Read the design standards for Checked Baggage Inspection Systems.  

In addition, when submitting the Facility Modification OTA application, all supporting National Environmental Policy Act documents must be attached. Additional information can be found in the application guidance for the facility modification.

What types of baggage screening projects are eligible for funding?

TSA funds new in-line projects based on its funding prioritization criteria. A project sponsor can proactively apply for design and construction funding related to building a new in-line checked baggage inspection system, a checked baggage resolution area upgrade, or an efficiency project for an existing inspection system. Only projects using qualified product list equipment are eligible for funding.

What types of projects are not eligible for funding?

Non-eligible projects include any request not related to a new in-line baggage screening system including, but not limited to:

  • Stand-alone baggage screening systems.
  • Equipment decommission and/or removal.
  • Equipment relocation.
  • Ancillary and/or safety equipment.
  • Reimbursement of electronic detection projects that are already completed.
  • Equipment recapitalization.

Which application should be submitted for a project?

The Design OTA application should be completed if the project sponsor is requesting funding for the design of an eligible checked baggage inspection system. The project sponsor must be prepared to provide its cost share for the design phase. Cost share and other financial information requirements are provided in the application guidance.

The facility modification application should be completed to request funding for construction of an eligible inspection system. As part of an application, the project sponsor must be prepared to provide its required cost share for the entire construction project.

Project sponsors are strongly encouraged to coordinate with local and headquarters TSA entities via project coordinators as early as possible when inspection system projects are being considered and conceptually planned.

Which version of the Planning Guidelines and Design Standards is applicable to the application?

Will applicants not funded have to reapply?

Projects that have received an evaluated unfunded letter will be considered during the next funding cycle.

Additional information and data may be required or requested in order to meet the current funding process requirements. A request for this information will be sent to the airport executive point of contact identified on the initial application.

If project application details change, please email your updates.  TSA will send a communication quarterly to solicit updates.