Kelowna, British Columbia: TerraSense Analytics announced today they have been awarded a $977,439 contract through the Department of National Defence’s Defence’s Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security (IDEaS) program. This contract will fund the next phase of development for its Multimodal Input Surveillance & Tracking (MIST) product, an advanced airborne surveillance system developed by TerraSense Analytics.
MIST is a computer vision system that uses artificial intelligence to watch the cameras onboard surveillance aircraft in real-time, fusing thermal and colour imagery and automatically identifying and tracking targets. Designed with input from airborne sensor operators in the Canadian Armed Forces and around the world, MIST uses deep learning to improve operator situational awareness and enable analysts on the ground to search and recall precise moments from thousands of hours of footage in an instant.
Working closely with Dr. Zheng Liu at the University of British Columbia, and Erik Blasch of the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research, the TerraSense Analytics team will spend the year developing and testing a working prototype of MIST. “Our goal is to provide concrete validation of the system onboard real aircraft, using real sensors, detecting real targets, by the end of this year”, says TerraSense Analytics CTO Jozsef Hamari.
As the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) role becomes increasingly important to the Canadian Armed Forces, even older aircraft are being outfitted with advanced camera packages. TerraSense Analytics, an artificial intelligence company with extensive experience processing imagery from airborne and remote sensors, will enable analysts to find the right intelligence quickly and easily, without requiring thousands of hours spent annotating video by hand.
This will be the second phase of development for MIST, which received its original funding from the Government of Canada in 2018 and has gone from concept to prototype in the time since.
The Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security (IDEaS) program is an investment of $1.6 billion over 20 years aimed at meeting the demands of today’s complex global defence and security environment. The program enables Canada to deliver the capabilities needed for a strong and agile military by providing financial support to foster innovation through contracts, contribution agreements and grants. The IDEaS program helps innovators by supporting analysis, funding research, and developing processes that facilitate access to knowledge. It will also support testing, integration, adoption, and acquisition of creative solutions for Canada’s defence and security communities. For more information on the IDEaS program, visit the website: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-national-defence/programs/defence-ideas/understanding-ideas/competitive-projects.html
About TerraSense Analytics
TerraSense Analytics develops remote sensing technologies with a focus on deep learning. Partnered with several research institutions to advance the development of aerial sensing technology, data fusion and predictive maintenance, TerraSense Analytics provides services to both the government and the private sector, deploying intelligent sensor solutions to the most remote and hostile domains. For more information visit www.terrasense.ca/mist.