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US Defense Dept. awards ABIS contract to Athena Sciences

US Defense Dept. awards ABIS contract to Athena Sciences

A software and services government contractor has won a U.S. defense contract to install and operate an automated biometrics ID system for an unnamed foreign government.

Athena Sciences, a small business located in the U.S. state of West Virginia, is not authorized to provide the value or length of the contract, according to a company spokesperson. This is not the first time Athena has won a contract to install, configure and operate this kind of biometric system for another government, they say.

The recipient of the system is identified only as a U.S. partner nation, a definition that covers other governments sharing Washington’s values. The spokesperson says Athena cannot name the nation.

The contracted system covers only finger, face and iris modalities.

“Our micro-service design uses cloud-ready technologies, encapsulates the biometric matching technology, and is flexible to changing transaction types enabling us to quickly implement, test, and deploy ABIS configurations,” says Chief Technology Officer Dan Nawrocki. “We see this solution as a blueprint for an ABIS at this scale.”

Ideal Innovation, along with NEC and EPS Corp., are working together with Athena.

The contract was issued by the Defense Department’s Project Management Biometrics unit. That group awarded a $63 million contract to Ideal Innovations to support the maintenance and operation of its biometric collection activity.

Athena claims its client list includes several U.S. government units, including the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Army and the states of Virginia and West Virginia. It also has sold to Quebec, Canada-based aircraft maker Bombardier, U.S. defense contractor Northrop Grumman and U.S. engineering company Leidos (formerly Science Application International).

The 13-year-old firm has been selling to the Project Management Biometrics unit as long as it has been incorporated.

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