Army Wants to Automate Base Access With Facial Recognition at Drive-Thru Checkpoints

The proposed system uses a reliable form of facial biometric identification but would need to control for variables like weather and low light.

The Army wants to make sure drivers entering bases through automated checkpoints are, in fact, who they claim to be, and is developing a new biometric camera system to assist.

The military branch issued a call on its Small Business Innovation Research, or SBIR, broad agency announcement—a contract vehicle used for working with small businesses on phased, iterative development programs—seeking early-stage design for a camera system able to pull usable images of drivers approaching checkpoints and matching those photos against a facial biometric database.

“The results would be displayed to the guard with a photo of the driver indicating an access granted or access denied response in time to allow uninterrupted vehicle traffic flow for approved users,” the call states.

For this specific use, the Army would compare the images taken by the camera with a preset gallery of approved entrants. This method threads the needle between one-to-one verification methods, which compare a new image with known photos of a person to verify their identity, and one-to-many identification algorithms, which compare an image to a broad database in search of the person’s identity.

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Author: Dian Welle