Open Architecture

Open Architecture is a design approach in which equipment components, such as software and hardware, are standards-based and interoperable to allow a wide range of industry partners to create improved subcomponents (like new detection algorithms, user interfaces, or reporting systems).

Vision

TSA’s vision is a connected transportation security system of systems in which state-of-the-art solutions are quickly adopted to address emerging threats and enables a dynamic screening environment.
 

Open Architecture Infographic

Common and Accessible Data and Interface Standards

Open Architecture success depends on common and accessible data and interface formats established in partnership with industry stakeholders. For TSA, the Digital Imaging and Communications in Security (DICOS) Standard and Open Platform Software Library (OPSL) provide the foundational common and accessible data and interface standards to enable a connected transportation security system of systems.

Frequently Asked Questions

To address the security mission, it is important to have a diverse marketplace. OA is key to supporting innovation from the entire community and providing a pathway to breakthrough capabilities because it positions TSA to implement multiple contract awards targeting specific components of the screening environment. This multiple contract award approach reduces the risks and up-front investment (that is, lowers the barrier to entry) associated with delivering a complete solution for a single contract award. As a result, industry partners can more easily participate within different segments of the transportation security market, based on their desired business model. In working with industry partners, TSA acknowledges the importance of ensuring usability in other mission spaces and protection of intellectual property. TSA aims to support broad use of OA solutions and in ensuring all industry partners – like Original Equipment Manufacturers and third-party developers – have their intellectual property protected. Goal 1 of the Open Architecture Roadmap outlines the importance of industry and stakeholder engagement. TSA aims to engage and coordinate across government and with regulators, stakeholder organizations, industry and international partners, national labs, academia, airlines and airports to  promote collaboration, continued progress, establishment of joint standards, and new ideas in partnership with stakeholders.

Open Architecture is a global aviation security priority. TSA engages directly with international partners in pursuit of Open Architecture solutions to help provide a unified market for aviation security equipment and reduce variation and complexity for industry in their development of solutions. TSA is focused on supporting the efforts with international partners to ensure a collaborative move towards improved security where investments can be made jointly and capabilities are accessible to the aviation security screening community. Additional details on TSA’s support and alignment with the international community are outlined in the Open Architecture for Airport Security Systems 2nd Edition.

TSA is pursuing multiple, parallel Open Architecture initiatives to incrementally enable a connect aviation security system-of-systems. The near-term focus is to operationalize mature Open Architecture concepts while. Additional details regarding near and long-term objectives are outlined in the Open Architecture Roadmap.

Open Architecture (OA) is a design approach in which equipment components, such as software and hardware, are standards-based and interoperable to allow a wide range of industry partners to create improved subcomponents (e.g., new detection algorithms, user interfaces, or reporting systems).

TSA is challenged with the need to establish solutions for 55,000 officers who screen over 2 million passengers per day at over 430 federalized airports with nearly 1,500 checked baggage systems and 680 checkpoints with 2,360 lanes. The security screening system is highly complex with limited data or interface standardization. Lack of standardization presents barriers to TSA achieving the desired security posture and hinders its ability to rapidly deploy innovative screening solutions to the field to respond to the evolving threat environment. This has put ever increasing burden on our frontline officers to perform the critical screening function with cumbersome procedures, complex training, and varying user interfaces. It is imperative that solutions be standards-based to support interoperability and allow for partnerships across the security industry while providing the frontline workforce with the tools they need to perform the mission.

Get in touch

Have questions or need help using TSA’s OA tools?

Please email

OASupport@tsa.dhs.gov

News

TSA OA Roadmap

Press Release

TSA-ACI-E Agreement to Pursue OA
Press Release

Eyes on the future
Press Release