DSIT Solutions and US Seismic Systems have been awarded a $900,000 grant from the BIRD Israel-US Binational Industrial Research and Development Foundation.

The grant is being awarded for the joint development of the next generation integrated passive/active threat detection system for underwater site protection. The BIRD Foundation provides funding money for projects involving joint innovation and development between American and Israeli companies.

John Moore, CEO of Acorn commented: "We encourage all of the Acorn portfolio companies to take advantage of synergies within the group in order to reach company goals faster and better. In this case we are very pleased to see that USSI and DSIT are cooperating on a very exciting project that has generated serious interest and funding from the BIRD Foundation.

"USSI, a company with vast experience in the field of fiber optic seismic sensors, has developed revolutionary, state-of-the-art fiber optic underwater passive sensors. DSIT is a world leader in active diver detection sonar systems. Both companies bring to the project their unique expertise and experience, in order to develop and integrate a very comprehensive passive/active underwater security system that will meet the needs of water bound energy facilities, offshore platforms, ports and harbors."

The integrated passive/active underwater security system that is the subject of this grant is potentially the most comprehensive system of its kind available. The advantages of combining the world’s best passive and active sensors will lead to an underwater system that provides extremely efficient and effective coverage of all areas of a site. The combined system will be designed to provide a much greater probability of threat detection with a lower rate of false alarms for all types of threats.

The BIRD Foundation grant is designated to cover 50% of the development costs of the project over a period of two years. The grant calls for the signing of a cooperation and project funding agreement between the companies and the BIRD Foundation within three months to enable commencement of the funding.

Dr Eitan Yudilevich, the executive director of the BIRD Foundation: "BIRD’s support of US-Israel partnerships has led to very significant successes during its 35 years of existence. These partnerships have contributed to both the US and Israel, by promoting innovation and reducing the risks of joint projects. This project is a great example of the special US-Israeli synergy in the area of Homeland Security".